Stipe Stephen Jelas/Yelas

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Stipe Stephen Jelas/Yelas

Birthdate: (76)
Birthplace: Drvenik, Croatia
Death: February 27, 1946 (76)
Auckland, New Zealand
Place of Burial: Auckland, New Zealand
Immediate Family:

Son of Joze Josip Jelaš and Marija Jelaš
Husband of Mare Yelas
Father of Olga Mary Hall; Elsie Mary Winton; Moscow Joseph Yelas and Annie Stella Anstis
Brother of Maria Divić; Matija Rakić and Šimun Jelaš

Occupation: winemaker
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Stipe Stephen Jelas/Yelas

Stipe arrived in NZ in July 1896 on the SS Te Anau. It appears that he made enough money to buy land when he jointly bought a block of land with Joze Radalj (Joseph Radaly). This land was at the head of a bullock track on what is now called Henderson Valley Rd. Radaly went gumdigging. Jelas went to California. On his return from California, the partners agreed to break up and divide the land between them. They each went their separate ways, clearing scrub, cutting out pockets of bush and cultivating the land with spade, pick and shovel. Stephen Yelas's first crop of potatoes and cabbage were railed to Auckland in 1899 at a loss. In 1898 he had planted his small 0.625 hectare (quarter acre) vineyard of Black Hamburg vines. While it matured, he depended on selling his vegetable crop, fossicking for kauri gum on his own land or periodically working on the gumlands in the local areas of Lincoln Rd, Henderson, Kumeu and Taupaki. Yelas expanded his vineyard to 0.6 hectares ( 1.5 acres) in 1903 and 1.6 ha (4acres) and in 1913 produced 1300 gallons. Stephen Yelas' stroke of luck was to secure the supply bar for Wendel's Wine Bar in Karangahape Rd between 1911 and 1931. In 1931 he bought the licence and the building and installed his old friend Ante Ivicevich as manager. The bar was renamed Dominion Wines Limited and was finally sold in 1992. It was an important factor in the successful growth of Pleasant Valley Wines. It is worth noting that only four wine bar licences were issued in 1881 New Zealand Wide. More info PP104-105 From Distant Villages by Stephen A Jelicich Pleasant Valley Wines was the first Croatian owned Vineyard in West Auckland. Stephen founded and managed from 1902-1939 followed by his son Moscow, from 1939 to 1984, and now managed by grandson Stephen.

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Stipe Stephen Jelas/Yelas's Timeline

Drvenik, Croatia
August 29, 1913
Age 43
Auckland, New Zealand
December 30, 1914
Age 44
Auckland, New Zealand
July 5, 1916
Age 46
Auckland, New Zealand
July 18, 1918
Age 48
Auckland, New Zealand
February 27, 1946
Age 76
Auckland, New Zealand
Auckland, New Zealand