Records are open for consultation unless otherwise indicated
Immediate source of acquisition:
On abolition of South Yorkshire County Council on 31 March 1986, the records passed from South Yorkshire County Record Office, by agreement of the four South Yorkshire District Councils, to the custody of Sheffield Archives as lead authority
Sheffield, West Riding of Yorkshire
Administrative / biographical background:
Records of John Kenyon and Co., manufacturers of saws etc., formerly of Millsands, Sheffield. The 1828 directory lists John Kenyon and Co. twice, firstly as saw manufacturers of Willey Street and secondly as merchants and manufacturers of saws, files, bar and sheet iron and steel of Hollis Croft. White's directory of 1833 makes it clear that these were two branches of the same firm. An advertisement in White's directory of 1876 describes the firm as founded in 1710 and as manufacturers of cast, sheer, bar, spring and sheet steel, saws, files, edge tools, machine knives etc. but by the 1920s the firm was making only saws, files and edge tools, the biggest trade by far being in saws.
These records were deposited by Mr Leonard Davison who joined the firm in 1924 to put in a new costing system and remained with it until 1930 when he was appointed receiver to wind up the business and who supplied the following notes on the firm. The firm had a large eastern European trade which at first was entirely with Russia through ARCOS, the Russian co-operative, but when ARCOS closed down, the trading was done via the Engineering and Mercantile Co. in London which built up business in Latvia, Estonia and Poland. The Engineering and Mercantile Co. was bought out by Cookson Produce and Chemical Co. and in 1930 with the onset of the depression, Cookson's decided to wind up John Kenyon and Co. Eventually everybody was paid in full and the factory which only a few years previously had been employing 200 people was closed. The business was transferred to Sanderson Brothers and Newbould and the name John Kenyon and Co. (Sheffield 1930) Ltd. survived as a subsidiary of Sanderson Kayser Ltd