Though not a major tektite collector, I have always had a soft spot for tektites with interesting provenance and/or historical data. Like most of the meteorites that I collect, I want to know: Who found it? Where? When? Who curated it? So when a chance to acquire a small batch of Australites with both museum provenance and historical data arose, I did not hesitate.

In September 1932 John W. Kennett took up a post at the Charlotte Waters Police Station in Central Australia. During his first year there, Sergeant Kennett developed a keen interest in Australites after being introduced to them by Aborigines. With the aid and training of the Aborigines, Sergeant Kennett began collecting Australites on the Gibber plains surrounding Charlotte Waters. He continued collecting Australites from the area for five years, and amassed one of the most remarkable Australite collections of the era before he was transferred to a different station in Alice Springs.

In February 1939 Sergeant Kennett's collection was brought to Charles Fenner (1884-1955), a leading authority on tektites for The South Australian Museum. Over a 12 month period Fenner carefully classified and measured Sergeant Kennett's collection, gleaning significant data on Australite sizes. Fenner had found that Sergeant Kennett's specimens had an average individual size that was about seven times that of the average individual size recorded in the famous Shaw Collection (~6 grams vs <1 gram). Fenner concluded that, though the fall of Australites was one vast shower, there were distinct differences in size, from region to region (reference can be found at bottom of page).

The John Kennett Collection was eventually acquired by The South Australian Museum in the 1940s, where specimens were cataloged and assigned collection numbers based on type. In the 80 or so years since Sergeant Kennett and his Aboriginal assistants collected these specimens, few have been available to private collectors. It is with great excitement that I am able to offer a small selection of these historic Kennett specimens, which came from the South Australian Museum and bear their museum numbers.

All specimens come with a label from our own collection. Shipping costs are as follows: Priority Mail USA $7.20, First Class USA $3.50, International First Class $13.95.

If you would like to reserve a specimen or have any questions, please contact me at

Copyright 2017 - M. Bandli - Photos may not be used without written permission

5.0 grams
31 x 12 x 10 mm

Ex The John Kennett Collection; South Australian Museum.

Collected on the Gibber plains surounding Charlotte Waters 1932-1937

7.0 grams
33 x 16 x 9 mm

7.4 grams

7.6 grams
34 x 15 x 11 mm

KENNETT BOATS. $45 each.

10.6 grams
35 18 x 13 mm

12.5 grams

14.5 grams
40 x 20 x 14 mm


13.0 grams

14.6 grams
35 x 20 x 18 mm

15.3 grams

18.1 grams

18.2 grams

19.4 grams

10.7 grams
35 x 18 x 12 mm

16.0 grams

Further reading regarding The John Kennett Collection, including a fascinating account of Kennett's interaction with the Aborigines, can be found in the following reference:

Fenner, C. (1940). Australites Part IV - The John Kennett Collection with notes on bediasites, Darwin glass, etc. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia, 64 (2), pp 304-324.