Norval F. Babb was a well-known jeweller who lived at 180 Mornington St., a property known for its beautiful gardens. Born in Mitchell, Babb came to Stratford in 1896 and established his jewelry store on Downie Street in 1901. His stock, which included diamonds and other precious stones, was generally known to be of the highest order. He was certified as a watch and clock expert for the Grand Trunk Railway. A man of many talents, he was also a graduate optician, and could issue marriage licences.
The main reason for naming a street in honour of Norval Babb, is that he owned the farm on Lot 3 Concession 10 which included most of the land on the north side of Ontario Street east of the city limits. Today, Babb Crescent is near the centre of what was once the Babb farm, though Noval Babb never lived there.
He was a great lover of horses, but it was said that he had the first International 10-20 tractor on steel wheels, which was used to cut his grain to save his horses during hot weather. In 1922, he sold his jewelry store at 23 Downie St. to Alex Gillies and D. B. Emm. In 1945, they sold the store to Carl Linkert.
Norval Babb was a city councillor in 1926 and 1927. He died in 1947.
* It was Norval's father-in-law, John Corrie, who built the Huron Street Bridge (see Huron Street). Source: Streets of Stratford 2004