Oroville festival features history of local olive industry

Oroville native Freda Ehmann is credited with launching the California olive oil industry in the 1900s. The family home still preserves local agricultural history.

Posted: Jun 15, 2019 7:14 PM
Updated: Jun 15, 2019 7:26 PM

OROVILLE, Calif. -  Saturday was the 9th Annual Olive Festival in Oroville.

Nancy Brower of the Butte County Historical Society said the day brings awareness of the history of the olive industry in the city of Oroville.

Brower said farmer Freda Ehmann is an Oroville native. She is credited for launching the California olive oil industry in the 1900's. Ehmann perfected the process of preserving the fruit, Brower said.

People were able to tour Ehmann's home, which still stands in Oroville.

Brower said, "The family sold it to the county at one point and the county used it for offices and added some pieces onto."

They didn't take very good care of it," she explained, "because when they moved out of it in the 1980s they thought it was going to be torn down for a parking lot."

Brower said there were a number in people in town who thought that was a disgrace.

Not only did history take a front seat for the event on Saturday, but people were able to taste olives and olive oil from local vendors.

There were also craft tents and boutiques for shopping. If you missed out this year, Brower said they will be back next year. The annual event is always held on the third Saturday in June.

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Another mostly sunny and hot day for northern California today, quite similar to yesterday. Our weather will begin to change tomorrow, however, as a disturbance brings more clouds, cooler air, and a few showers and thunderstorms.
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