(APA-218: dp. 10,500 (f.); l. 455'3"; b. 63'4"; dr. 24', s. 18 k.; cpl. 536; a. 1 5", 12 40mm., 24 landing craft; cl. Haskell; T. VC2-S-AP5)
Counties in Indiana, Ohio, and Oklahoma. Noble County in Indiana was named for Noah Noble, an early governor of that state; Noble County in Ohio was named for James Noble, an early settler; and Noble County in Oklahoma was named for John Noble, Secretary of the Interior from 1889 to 1893.
Noble (APA-218) was laid down as MCV hull 566, 20 July 1944 by Permanente Metals Corp., Richmond, Calif. as a modified Victory ship; completed by the Kaiser Shipyard at Richmond; launched 18 October 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Maxine C. Jones; acquired by the Navy 27 November 1944; and commissioned the same day, Comdr. Solomon S. Isquith in command.
Noble's primary mission was to transport to a combat area the men and some of the material necessary for an assault on an enemy shore. Her main armament, her boat group, was designed to deliver her troops and cargo to the beach in a planned and orderly fashion. After discharging troops and equipment, she could evacuate casualties or prisoners of war.
In January 1945 Noble steamed westward to participate in the Okinawa campaign. Upon termination of the war she assisted in the delivery of released allied prisoners of war from Korea to the Philippines. She also participated in Operation "Magic Carpet," returning servicemen from the Pacific to the United States.
Noble was attached to the Atlantic Fleet from 1946 through 1949, operating out of Norfolk, Va. She returned to San Diego 13 September 1949 and was undergoing overhaul at Mare Island Naval Shipyard, San Francisco when war broke out in Korea in June 1950. In August she steamed to Korea to participate in the September Inchon amphibious assault. Thereafter she assisted in the transport of U.S. and foreign troops and equipment to and from the Korean combat zone. In July 1953 she participated in Operation "Big Switch," moving Communist North Korean prisoners from Koje Do to Inchon pursuant to the armistic agreement.
Subsequent to the Korean War, Noble conducted training operations in both the eastern and western Pacific areas. In 1955 she assisted in the evacuation of Chinese civilians and military from the Tachen Islands to Formosa.
At the outset of the Cuban crisis 27 October 1962, Noble embarked 1,400 Marines with their equipment and steamed for the Caribbean in company with other Pacific Fleet amphibious units. She returned to San Diego in December, then deployed to WestPac in March 1963 for a tour with the 7th Fleet Amphibious Ready Group.
Noble returned to San Diego in December 1963 and conducted upkeep and training operations until she decommissioned 1 July 1964. She then entered the Mare Island Naval Shipyard for preparation for transfer to Spain under the Mutual Assistance Program. The transfer ceremony took place 19 December at San Francisco.