|Adapted from the Sanborn Fire Insurance Map|
By the late 1920s she had begun developing clusters of buildings. This subdivision is in West Ridge, but most of her work is found in Rogers Park.
|North side of Farwell, west of Oakley|
|Entrances along Farwell (in order)|
As I investigate more of these clusters I want to examine Emma Kennett's team, which included investors, architects, contractors, and even an illustrator who created perspective renderings for publication. My guess is that her body of work will be just as consistent as that of an architect working in the same period on similar types of buildings.
I recently received some research performed by a hugely generous reader who investigated some of the open questions in this post. A special thanks to Marsha Holland of Edgewater, who provided the following accounts, distilled from US Census records and other primary sources accessed through Ancestry.com. And she even found some useful Tribune articles I had overlooked. (inserted 10/25/12)
Herbert Richter more or less disappears after his World War II draft registration in 1942. He seems to have drifted after his work with Emma Kennett. At the time of the 1940 census he lived in Baltimore, Maryland, and worked as a carnival waiter. His home in 1940 apparently was a large transient structure, perhaps the train cars that carried the circus equipment (let me know if you want me to send a pdf of the actual census pages). He is not in the Social Security database, either because he died young or never paid in.
Emma C. Kennett was truly a remarkable woman. I was able to find out a good bit about her husband James’ family background but her own family of origin remains a mystery. Her maiden name was Anderson, her parents were born in Norway, she apparently grew up in or near Chicago, and a Tribune article that I do not reference in the attached file indicates she had a sister named Mable living in Los Angeles at the time of her husband’s murder in 1935. Someone needs to write a short biography of her for the Rogers Park and Edgewater Historical Societies, since she can be claimed by both communities as a resident. She definitely left her mark on the city. [Agreed! ed.]
Chicago Tribune, 23 August 1935, page 10
Article about the murder of James C, Kennett by a confessed serial killer. Kennett, who was “in the mountains for his health,” met the 21 year old man in Roseville, about 15 miles from the mine shaft in the Serra Nevada mountains where Kennett’s body was found. The killer, an itinerant prospector, said the two had met and decided to camp together, and that the murder occurred as a result of a quarrel over supplies. He claimed to have murdered 24 other people. [He was convicted and hung in May, 1936.]
Chicago Tribune, 30 August 1935, page 18
Rites Here Tomorrow for J.C. Kennett, Slain in the West
The ashes of J.C. Kennett, Sr., retired Chicago contractor, who was slain in a mining camp near Auburn, California, about two months ago, are being returned to Chicago, it was learned yesterday. Services will be held at 2:30 p.m. in the Mount Olive chapel, Irving Park Boulevard and Narragansett Street. Kennett is survived by his wife Emma of 6341 Sheridan Road, from whom he had been divorced; by two sons, James Jr., 21 years old, and Maynard, 19 years old, and a daughter Joyce, 15 years old.