Wagon building, ostriches and winemaking

History of Robertson


Province: Western Cape
Coordinates:33°48′S 19°53′E
Area:23.5 km2
Municipality: Langeberg

Founding of Robertson

Robertson, was founded in 1853 and named after a Scottish, Dutch reformed minister, Dr. Wiliam Robertson. It is in a fertile valley where the economy revolved around farming and wagon building. There were many wheelwrights, blacksmiths, carpenters, upholsterers, and professional transport riders based in the town. The wagon building industry became redundant when the transport of goods could be done using the railway infrastructure.
Subsequently, ostrich farming was popular, but that industry too collapsed at the whim of fashion when the feathers were no longer in style.

Agriculture and the economy of Robertson.

Successful racehorse stud farms were established sometime later, but agriculture is the mainstay of the town’s economy today. Robertson is one of the most successful Wineland towns and is one of the largest in South Africa. Robertson is known as the Muscadel and Brandy capital of South Africa

Irrigation in the town of Robertson

The area has relatively low rainfall and a river irrigation scheme brought water to farms by way of furrows and canals. Subsequently, farms became more productive.
In the 1720s migrant, farmers were attracted to this area for sheep and cattle grazing. By the early 1800s, many of them had settled permanently in the area. They bought land directly from the government.
By 1852 it became necessary for a town to be established. Farmland was bought from Johannes Van Zijl and plots were made available at forty pounds each.

Robertson during the Anglo-Boer War

The laying of the cornerstone of the Dutch Reformed Church in 1853 in the middle of the town is considered as the birthday of the town. Soon thereafter schools and stores were built.
A British garrison was stationed in Robertson during the second Anglo-Boer War and the First World War saw many local men leave never to return.
The town today is beautiful with jacaranda tree-lined streets and immaculately preserved buildings. It is known for its gardens and its roses in particular.

Robertson is the “capital” and business centre of the Breede River Wine Valley, also known as the valley of wine and roses.  It’s a safe, charming country town with Victorian buildings, jacaranda-lined streets, and beautiful gardens There are over 50 wine cellars in the area.

The license plate prefix in Robertson is CCD and the postcode is 6705


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Things to see and do in Robertson


Useful Numbers in Robertson

  • Police: 023 626 8340 10111
  • Traffic department: 023 626 8251
  • Fire: 023 6261375 /082 7707964
  • Poison helpline; 021 931 6129
  • Municipality 023 615 8000 52 Church Street
  • Water:
  • Electricity:
  • Ambulance: 10177
  • Post office; 023 626 1001
  • Library: 023 626 8205
  • Callie De Wet sports field 626 8200
  • Nkqubela sports fields: 023 626 8200
  • Van Zyl Street sports fields:023 626 8200
  • Nkqubela Hall:023 626 8200
  • Robertson town hall: 023 626 8200
  • Robertson civic: 023 626 8200
  • Closest hospitals;
  • State Hospital 023 6268500
  • Carewell private hospital 028 050 2266
  • Pharmacy; 023 6264336
  • SPCA: winelands branch: 023 615 2241
  • Schools:

Laerskool Robertson 023 626 3060
Robertson high 023 626 3159
Vergesig primary 023 626 3839
Langeberg secondary023 626 3579
Nkquebela primary 023 626 1543

  • Museums;
  • Robertson Museum 50 Paul Kruger st 023 626 3681
    Commando building Kerk st
  • Bedehuis Betanie 023 626 5345
  • Robertson Tourism Office-(Tel) 023 626 4437[/vc_column_text]

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