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Gilbert, William (1850–1923)

William Gilbert, n.d.

William Gilbert, n.d.

from Pastoral Review, 16 April 1923

Mr. William Gilbert, "The Squire" of Pewsey Vale, died at his residence, Lyndoch, South Australia, on the morning of 29th March, at the age of 73 years. He had been in indifferent health for some time. He was a son of the late Mr. Joseph Gilbert, a pioneer settler in the Central State. His father first ran sheep in the South Para district, having brought 300 over from Van Diemen's Land at a cost of £3 a head. The flock was afterwards removed to Pewsey Vale, and by a process of careful selection the descendants of the original importation were brought to a high standard of excellence. Tireless energy and hard labour gradually brought into being the ideal Pewsey Vale home of to-day, surrounded by its deer park, vineyards, and garden. The breeding and racing of thoroughbreds was undertaken, and Shorthorn cattle of the best milking strains imported from England.

After passing through St. Peter's College, the late Mr. Gilbert proceeded to Cambridge University. He, however, inherited his father's pioneering instincts, and in 1872 stocked with cattle and horses the then almost unknown Macdonnell Range country in the neighbourhood of Alice Springs, where he established Owen Springs station. Three years later he took over the management of his father's properties which, in addition to Pewsey Vale, included the Mount Bryan freehold of 32,000 acres, and the Oriecowie Run on Yorke's Peninsula. These properties were sold soon after the death of his father in 1881. Concentrating attention upon his sheep, he quickly brought them to the front rank for quality of their wool, and his clip constantly netted record prices. Many of the surplus ewes of Pewsey Yale have gone to Western Australia, and some years ago the estate supplied 400 ewes and 20 rams to the order of the Amir of Afghanistan. With the exception of an importation of Nigretti rams, the only ones used in the flock outside home-bred studs have been some Murray rams.

Mr. Gilbert leaves a widow. The surviving sons of the family are—Dr. H. H. Gilbert (Adelaide), Mr. William Gilbert (Wangalere, near Pewsey Vale), and Capt. T. Gilbert (India). There are four daughters—Misses Dorothy, Marjorie, Katherine and Emily Gilbert. Two sons, Joseph and John, were killed in the war.

Original publication

Citation details

'Gilbert, William (1850–1923)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/gilbert-william-421/text422, accessed 19 June 2019.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2019

William Gilbert, n.d.

William Gilbert, n.d.

from Pastoral Review, 16 April 1923