Blog 5: Meet R.W. and Kathleen Oliver- Generation 3



RW & Kathleen’s Wedding 1919

RW (Robert William) Oliver would prove to be just the man to take Oliver’s Taranga well into the 20th Century. RW diversified the business – in addition to growing winegrapes and producing currants and raisins for the dried fruit market, he also began a merino stud, a clydesdale horse stud, a cattle stud, built a piggery and continued cropping some of the property with wheat and barley.

RW was just 28 years old in 1910 when his father passed away. The Australian pound would replace the British pound as Australia was granted the license to print currency that year; and the machinery revolution for farming was imminent. RW & Sons purchased the first tractor- a Farmall H model- for the Taranga property in 1944 and set about work to save the family business. We still have that tractor, although it is in retirement, some 67 years later! 

 

Robert & Kathleen lived in a house built by Robert, not far from his parents home on Taranga Farm and raised 3 sons- HJ (Herbert John), Archibald and Keith. This is the house that Corrina now lives in.

 

Robert was a highly respected resident of McLaren Vale, holding various responsible positions in the district. He served as Councillor for the Noarlunga District Council, was secretary of the Southern Football association and a member of the McLaren Vale Institute Committee.

After only a few years RW’s grape growing savvy and business acumen had put Oliver’s on a pretty good wicket and he was able to enjoy his one consuming passion – sport- playing Aussie Rules, Bowls and Cricket for McLaren Vale. 

RW, HJ, Kathleen, Keith & Arch Oliver circa 1930's
McLaren Vale Footy Team 1920 Premiership Winners- RW was the president (4th from left, middle row)
 

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