History of The Eden Valley Region
During colonisation in 1838, chairman of the South Australian Company, George Fife Angas, commissioned mineralogist Johann Menge to explore the area, and on receiving his promising reports, purchased the seven surveys of the Barossa Range land. This began a trend of bigger land holdings, largely amongst other English settlers, one of whom was Joseph Gilbert. Gilbert established the first vineyard, Pewsey Vale, on his property in Eden Valley in 1847.
Henry Evans, son-in-law of George Fife Angas, soon followed in 1853 at Evandale, near a village known today as Keyneton. Unfortunately, Henry’s wife Sarah was not cast from the same mould, for upon his death in 1868 she followed her temperance convictions and had the winemaking grapes either grafted over to currants or removed and replaced with apple trees.
While some things have changed over time, much of the land in Eden Valley still remains with the families of these early settlers.