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Manitoba History No. 89

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Memorable Manitobans: William James Kennedy (1857-1912)

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William James Kennedy
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Businessman, MLA (1897-1899).

Born at Kent County, Canada West [now Ontario] on 9 June 1857, son of George and Charlotte Kennedy, he was educated at Selton public school. He came to Manitoba in 1882. He served as Alderman and Mayor of Virden, where he was an implement maker. He owned the Virden Advance for a short time and, after being defeated in the 1896 general election, was elected the Liberal representative for Virden in the bye-election of 1897, serving to the end of the term. He was defeated in the 1899 general election by James C. Simpson. From 1901 until 1912 he lived in Winnipeg as an official of the Dominion Immigration Department. He married Sarah Jane Brady (1862-1945) of Clifford, Ontario and they had seven children: Harvey Everest Kennedy (1886-?), Gertrude Kennedy (1887-?), Arthur Kennedy (1890-?), George Thomas Kennedy (1894-?), Howard Clifford Kennedy (1896-?), Jennie Beryl Kennedy (1898-?), and Alan Kennedy (1902-?). He died at his Winnipeg home, 84 Langside Street, on 22 December 1912 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery.


Birth registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

A History of Manitoba: Its Resources and People by Prof. George Bryce, Toronto: The Canadian History Company, 1906.

Pioneers and Early Citizens of Manitoba, Winnipeg: Manitoba Library Association, 1971.

Obituary, Manitoba Free Press, 23 December 1912, page 17.

We thank Sharon Granger for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 28 September 2018

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society.

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