Historical information

John Kennedy was born on 04 April 1862, the son of ship carpenter Robert Kennedy and his wife Florinda (Aitken), and the brother of Malcolm and Colin Kennedy. In 1860 the family migrated to Melbourne where Kennedy senior set up as a shipwright. In 1879 Malcolm and John, who trained as a naval architect, joined their father as Robert Kennedy & Sons, shipbuilders and shipsmiths. On 27 December 1883 at North Melbourne, Malcolm married Ann White with Presbyterian forms. Next year Robert Kennedy & Sons removed to Hobart where with John W. Syme and W. J. Duffy, partners until 1889, they took over the Derwent Ironworks & Engineering Co., a foundry formerly owned by the (Alexander) Clark family. The Kennedys also acquired the patent slipyard, formerly Ross's, at Battery Point.
After the shipbuilding industry in Hobart began to flag John also turned to mining: he attended the Ballarat School of Mines, and reopened the Hobart smelters which had been an adjunct of the Derwent Ironworks in the 1870s. He made several voyages overseas on smelting business and as mining promoter, and was a member of the London Stock Exchange. In 1913-14 he was manager of Tongkah Compound (1910); Robert Kennedy & Sons was reputed to have contributed to the success of the Hobart-run Tongkah Harbour, Thailand, tin mines by developing a suitable dredge. The brothers also held shares in the Irrawaddy Burma Co. John was a member of the Australasian Institute of Mining Engineers and from 1932 an honorary life member of the American Institute of Mining & Metallurgical Engineers. John died in Hobart on 10 January 1937. (Ann G. Smith, 'Kennedy, John (1862–1937)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/kennedy-john-7092/text11963, published first in hardcopy 1983, accessed online 24 April 2020.)

Physical description

A book covered in black leather with 'John Kennedy' embossed on the front in gold. The book contains notes from the time he studies at the Ballarat School of Mines. The beginning of the book has an alphabetical section where John Kennedy has created an index.

Inscriptions & markings

Inside front cover 'John Kennedy Nena Wharf Hobart Tasmania.'