From: History of Solano County, California
By: Marguerite Hune
and Napa County, California
By: Harry Lawrence Gunn
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Tobias d: Kilkenny, city engineer for the city of Vallejo and one of the best known men in his profession in California, is a native son of Solano county and his interests ever have centered here. He was born on the Kilkenny ranch in the immediate vicinity of the pleasant village of Elmira on June 24, 1884, and is a son of Anthony and Catherine (Lydon) Kilkenny, natives of Ireland and both now deceased. Anthony Kilkenny, who had settled in this county in the early '70s, thus becoming one of the pioneer ranchers in the county, died in 1886, leaving his widow with a family of eight sons. She kept the family together and with her sons continued to maintain the interests of the ranch which by that time had become a well developed and excellent piece of property. Of these eight sons all are living save one, Martin A. Kilkenny, who died at the age of thirty years, the immediate subject of this sketch having a twin brother, Herbert L. Kilkenny, and five elder brothers, John L., Thomas A., James J., Lucas E. and Anthony F. Kilkenny.
As will be observed by the comparison of above dates, Tobias d: Kilkenny was but two years of age when his father died. He was reared on the home place in the vicinity of Elmira and was graduated from the Vacaville Union high school. He then entered the University of California, his studies there being completed in the department of civil engineering, and in 1906 was graduated from that institution. Even before his graduation Mr. Kilkenny's qualifications as a civil enginaer had become well recognized in the community. In 1915, after nine years of varied experience, he was appointed city civil engineer for the city of Vallejo, a position which by successive reappointments he since has occupied and to the duties of which he has given his most earnest and intelligent attention. A review of the engineering development that has taken place in the city during the ten years of Mr. Kilkenny's incumbency will reveal that he has been in technical charge of some very important physical improvements there, these including the laying of no fewer than ten miles of paved streets, the extension of the sewer system and the creation of the new waterworks system, utilizing a water source in the Gordon valley. He also has rendered effective service as consulting engineer on numerous construction projects of importance in various parts of the state and particularly in connection with bridging Carquinez straits and Napa river in the vicinity of Vallejo.
In 1915, at St. Dominica church, San Francisco, Tobias d: Kilkenny was united in marriage to Miss Louise A. Rhodes, who was born in the city of San Francisco, daughter of Frank and Mary Rhodes, and they have five children, Louis C., Genevieve, Francis A., Tobias J. and Paul. Mr. and Mrs. Kilkenny are members of the Roman Catholic church and Mr. Kilkenny is a past grand knight of the local council (No. 874) of the Knights of Columbus. He has long given his earnest attention to the affairs of this order in California, has represented the local council in the grand lodge of the state and has also served as a district officer of the same.