A former convict turned entrepreneur is the star of a new booklet to be launched for the Australian Heritage Festival Tasmania.
Britton Jones built Franklin House in 1938, on Hobart Road at Youngtown.
Jones is a feature during the tours of the now National Trust-run historic building.
Franklin House volunteer Lucille Gee wrote the booklet about Jones.
“He was a felon who became a very astute businessman,” Ms Gee said.
Mr Jones’ struggles should remind people that “when things are bad, you keep going”.
Convicted of stealing about 20 pounds of lead, he was sentenced to seven years’ transportation in 1820.
“It was people like Britton Jones who endeavoured to strive, struggle, exert, cope and making the most of it to build a family home and make a safe area for his family to live and maintain a better life than he had experienced,” Ms Gee said.
He received his certificate of freedom five years later.
Mr Jones built Franklin House in 1838 in order to lease it out.
Ms Gee said it was a pure money making venture on his behalf.
By 1849, Mr Jones owned about 320 hectares of land.
About 44 relatives of Mr Jones visited Franklin House for a reunion last week.
Up to nine generations, from toddlers to adults, travelled to the historic home from across Australia for the event, Ms Gee said.
Ms Gee’s book Britton Jones: A Convict who became a Colonial Entrepreneur will be officially launched with a high tea and talk on May 26, as part of Australian Heritage Festival Tasmania.
She will discuss how she researched and wrote the story of the former convict who built Franklin House.
The booklet was Launceston’s contribution to the festival, she said.
The theme for this year’s Australian Heritage Festival Tasmania is ‘My Culture, My Story’. The festival runs for the month of May.
Contact 6344 7824 to book a seat for the launch.