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The history of Wellwood Merino Stud has its origins in the year 1838;

Charles Rubidge purchases the farm Patrysfontein in the Graaff-Reinet district, relocating thus from the Grahamstown district and renaming it Wellwood.

He brings with him his flock of Merino sheep, as the conditions around Graaff-Reinet are more favourable for the farming of sheep, and the Wellwood Merino Stud is born.

Charles invests in the best possible bloodlines from the outset, travelling abroad to purchase Rambouillet rams and Josephine ewes, both of French origin, and known for fine wool and good meat.

Today, with more than 180 years and five generations passed, descendants of the same Rubidges and of that same Merino flock -- having adapted to environments both climatic and economic -- still reside on the same property; Wellwood.



The first Wellwood homestead - a mud cottage built as a temporary residence.


The Graaff-Reinet Herald of December 15, 1860 carries an advertisement for a private sale on the farm Wellwood in the Graaff-Reinet district. Offering 600 to 800 Merino ewes.


1873 Sire Bizmark, imported by Charles and Richard, after a visit to France, Ramboullet.  Having finally bought the rams, after a 4-month ram buying tour, they were told that they couldn’t be transported back live so they paid for them as full passengers. 

Sire Melbourne.jpg

1889 Sire Melbourne, imported by Richard from Tasmania at a cost of 400 Guineas (R840)

Purchased for their plain bodies after the terrible droughts of 1877/8

sire 1900.jpg

Wellwood Bred Sire at the turn of the century, 1900

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