He attended the State School of Technology in Atlanta, and continued architectural study in Toulouse, France, where he graduated at the Ecole des Beaux Arts.
After starting practice in Macon under his own name, the young man joined William F. Dunwoody in partnership, and carried on work under the firm name of Dunwoody & Oliphant from 1919 to 1930, specializing in church and school work. In Macon the firm’s best known works were the Alexandria IV school; the Vineville, Mulberry Street and Cherokee Heights Methodist churches; and a Sunday School Building for the First Presbyterian Church. Mr. Oliphant was also associated with the firm of Walker & Weeks of Cleveland on Wesleyan College, and under the firm name of Dunwoody & Oliphant assisted Lockwood & Poundstone on plans of Christ Church Parish House in Macon.
After 1930 Mr. Oliphant carried on independent practice except for brief periods of association with other architects, namely Claude E. Shelverton, on plans for the Miller High School and a Shop Building at the Lanier High, and Alexander Blair on the Pearl Stephens School, both in Macon.