History: The farm was first granted in 1692 to two freed slaves, Marquard and Jan Ceylon. It was then known as “Jan Lui”, a name clearly derived from the nickname of Jan of Ceylon and probably a contraction of “Jan Lui Zyn plaats”.
In 1712 it was transferred to Anna Hoeks, the widow of the pioneer traveller Ensign Isaq Schrijver who undertook an extensive journey in 1687. He travelled from Cape Town and crossed the Swartberg Mountains to reach the edge of the Great Karoo.
Anna Hoeks became the owner of almost the whole Jonkershoek Valley. After her death the land changed hands and was sub-divided. In 1790 the farm Jan Lui which had changed its name by then, together with the farm Jonkershoek passed into the hands of Pieter Jacob du Toit. These two farms were now combined under the name Weltevreden. In 1813 Coenraad Johannes Albertyn bought this farm Weltevreden. In the following year he built himself this fine house on Jan Lui and re-named the farm “Nectar”.
This was not the first house on this site. Indeed, there are indications that the present house is an adaptation of the original house which constitutes the left side of the present building. This is suggested firstly by the peculiar L shape and the fact that the vertical of the L does not integrate perfectly with the front portion of the house. Secondly, the ground opposite the vertical of the L has been levelled, which would hardly have been done on a mountain slope if it had not been built upon. In the third place, the woodwork of the left-hand front gable is of a later date which again suggests that it was probably replaced after the completion of the building. Finally, there is a second, independent entrance with its own steps on this side.’
When this property passed to the Tennant family during the 1920’s, its name was changed to “Glenconnor”, but it is now known as “Old Nectar”.
Visual Description: The front of this house is one of the most striking in the Western Cape, an outstanding example of the late neo-classical type of gable. The impressive appearance of the gable is due to the perfect proportions of the elevation as well as the unique design of the gable itself. The gable occupies precisely one-third of the narrow façade, a circumstance which gives it height and prominence. The balance is preserved by a full-width and a half-width window on each side of the door and a full-width dormer window above it. The front “stable” door and fanlight together with the sash windows, small panes and wooden shutters, all form a harmonious whole. The gable derives its particular character from four pilasters which rise without interruption from the stoep, the vase on each of the pilasters and the triangular pediment. The monotony of the plain plastered spaces between the pilasters is broken by festoons.
Construction Date: 1800
Catalogue: , No: , Significance Category:
Old Nectar is architecturally one of the finest and best-known gabled houses of the old Cape type. It is situated on the farm, formerly known as Weltevreden, allotted in 1685. Bibliography archive: f & c, 05.04, p 156