Robert Turner was born in Poyntzpass, Armagh, Ireland in 1868, immigrating to Canada in 1888. He apprenticed as a blacksmith in Ontario. Turner later took on work with the C.P.R. as a second cook in the dining car. He came to Salmon Arm and bought 70 acres from Alex Paul just east of present day 8th Ave. NE. By 1906 he had a thriving orchard, growing Red Astrachans, Duchess Kings, Golden Russets, Northern Spy, Peewaukee and Seek-No-Further apples. Robert Turner named his operation “Coraghwood Orchard.” He originated and propagated the Turner Red Delicious Apple, identified to have come from nursery stock brought from Vernon’s Coldstream Ranch.
Robert married Maude Louise in 1907, youngest daughter of Alexander and Agnes McGuire. Maude arrived with her family in 1890. The Turners had four children: Edward Charles, Marjorie Eglah (later Brooks), Ronald Hudson, and Alexander Robert (Sandy).
Robert Turner died the year of the Big Freeze (1949/1950) which eliminated most of Salmon Arm’s orchards. Luckily, he never knew of the devastation.