Select Jenner Miscellany

Here are some Jenner stories and accounts over the years:

Jenner Brewers from Sussex

Robert and Henry Jenner from Rotherfield in Sussex founded Jenner’s brewery in south London in 1787.  Based in Southwark, this family-owned brewery came to be known in Victorian times as the theater brewers.  

The Victorian proprietors were Robert Jenner, followed by his son Albert Jenner, and then by his son Harold Jenner in the early 1900's.  The brewery premises on Southwark Bridge Road had gotten rather dated by that time.  Harold devoted himself to his music.  He was the organist at St. John's Presbyterian church in Kensington for 21 years and conductor of the Kensington Choral Society for 18 years.

In 1938 Anthony Jenner sold the business to Woodhead’s and after the war joined Harveys, the Sussex brewers in Lewes, as their head brewer.  His son Miles now carries on the family tradition as Harveys’ head brewer.

The Jenners of Chislehurst and St. Columb Major

A tomb within the iron railings of St. Nicholas church, Chislehurst contains the following inscription: 

“Sacred to the memory of Robert Jenner esq. who departed this life on December 2, 1810, aged 67 years.  Also to the memory of Ann, his widow, who departed this life on August 24, 1827, aged 78 years. 

Sacred also to the memory of the Rt. Hon. Sir Herbert Jenner Fust, second son of Robert Jenner esq, aforesaid Dean of the Arches and Judge of the Prerogative Court of Canterbury.  He died on February 20, 1852, aged 74 years.  Also to the memory of Elizabeth, wife of Sir Herbert Jenner, who died on July 29, 1828, aged 44 years.” 

Profession apart, Sir Herbert was said to have lived for cricket.  He was also reputed to have been the second best real tennis player in England in his time.  However, in his later years he became so infirm that he had to be carried in and out of court by two footmen. 

Sir Herbert’s son Henry was one of the two curates to the rector of St. Columb Major in Cornwall.  His son Henry, born there in 1848, became a great authority on Celtic languages, was a senior bard of the Cornish Gorsedd, and did much to promote the revival of Cornish as a living language.  Another branch of the Chislehurst Jenners made their home at Wenvoe castle in Glamorgan.

Isaac Jenner, Marine Painter

Isaac Jenner, the son of a Brighton blacksmith, joined the Royal Navy in 1855 at 18, and sailed the seas for a decade.  He then returned to Brighton, learned to paint, and found work as a landscape and marine painter.  His most popular subjects were the Sussex and Cornish coasts and large historical seascapes.  In 1883, after having experienced difficulties with picture dealers, he decided to emigrate and set off with his large family for Brisbane in Queensland. 

There he made a living by selling paintings, holding art unions and by teaching.   However, he soon found Brisbane lacking in sufficient taste and civilized pursuits for him, while he felt his own talents went unrecognized.  So he removed himself to the outer suburb of Taringa where he lived and worked for the last twelve years of his life.

Bill Jenner of Crawford County, Indiana

Bill Jenner was born in 1908 to Woody and Jane Jenner in a two-room smokehouse in the small town of Marengo in the hills of south Indiana.  As a youngster he would sit around the potbellied stove in the Jenner general store and listen to his father, the Republican chairman of Crawford county, spin tales of the Republican heroes of yesteryear. 

Bill started his political life in Indiana during the Depression years.  He became a US Senator in 1946 and earned a reputation as an anti-communist crusader, second only to Joseph McCarthy. 

The Jenners in Marengo date back to the 1840’s when Stephen Jenner arrived there with his family from Kentucky.  His brother Ezra joined him later.  Their father Samuel was a native of Vermont who had fought in the War of 1812.  The line before that went back to Woodbury, Connecticut.

Bruce Jenner and the Kardashians

Bruce Jenner came from an East Coast athletics background on both his father’s and grandfather’s side.   As he told a sports magazine interviewer:   "By the time I turned two, I'd already developed a big chest, wide shoulders, and boundless energy."  He won a gold medal in the decathlon in the 1976 Montreal Olympics. 

But he is better known now as a California TV celebrity.  In 1991 he married Kris Kardashian, the divorced wife of lawyer Robert Kardashian.  Since the 2007 debut of the TV reality show Keeping Up with the Kardashians, he has appeared as the step-father to the four Kardashian siblings - Kourtney, Kim, Khloe and Rob.  In 2015 he announced that he had become a woman.

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