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MacKENZIE, John Russell

Died: 1889 06 16


John Russell Mackenzie was the son of Captain Mackenzie of Friendville, and was articled to James Matthews of Mackenzie & Matthews of Aberdeen. Thereafter he was in York for a time for experience, perhaps with G Fowler Jones, and by 1850 had commenced business on his own account in Aberdeen, where he secured the patronage of the Aberdeen Town and Country Bank at least by the mid-1860s. Adolph Gislingham HOWARD was an apprentice in his office and worked there for five years before leaving for South Africa in 1876.

At the beginning of 1878 Mackenzie took Duncan McMillan into partnership, but in 1883 Mackenzie became bankrupt, perhaps as a result of building speculatively in Queen's Garden, although Fenton Wyness was told in his youth that it was from 'flying too high.' The partnership of Mackenzie & McMillan was then dissolved. Mackenzie's situation aroused considerable sympathy: he had been a town councillor for six years and a public testimonial raised 200 guineas presented by Provost Henderson. After a few years of fairly successful practice on his own account, Mackenzie emigrated in August 1888. He went 'mainly on account of his wife' to Johannesburg, where he was immediately commissioned to design the £20,000 Goldfields Club, but died of a fever on 16 June 1889.

(Dictionary of Scottish Architects)

All truncated references not fully cited in 'References' are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.