Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

Measurer and architect, of Dublin. Bryan Bolger began his career as a measurer circa 1780 and had become official measurer to the Board of Ordnance by about 1800.(1) Between 1790 and 1823 he was also employed as a measurer by Trinity College, Dublin.(2) In February 1810 he was appointed measurer to the Board of Works in place of the disgraced DOMINICK MADDEN DOMINICK MADDEN , a post for which he was recommended by the Attorney General and the Archbishop of Dublin.(2) He continued in this post until 1831, when he sent a memorial to the Lord Lieutenant asking permission to retire in favour of his nephew and assistant JAMES BOLGER JAMES BOLGER . He was a member of the Bricklayers' and Plasterers' Guild of St Bartholomew(3) and seems also to have been an active Catholic. He purchased the lease for the ground on which the Christian Brothers' school in North Richmond Street was built to designs by himself or his nephew James, resigning the lease to the brothers after the laying of the foundation stone by Daniel O'Connell on 9 June 1828.

Bolger died on 12 December 1834. In his will he appoints as his executors Matthew Neary Mahon, bookseller of Grafton St, and his nephew James, of Little Longford St. The will contains a bequest of £600 to the Clarendon Street Chapel and provides an annuity for his nephew John, son of his brother Joseph. His nephew James, son of his brother James, inherited all his measuring books, copies of bills (of quantity) and architectural books, and the remainder was left to Brother Murray of the Townsend St Chapel and Mr Edmund Rice of the Convent of the City of Waterford.(4) If Bolger had any children they do not appear to have survived him; the accounts for the education of Miss Bolger and of John and James Bolger described by Kelly(5) could perhaps refer to the nephews mentioned in his will and a niece.

Bolger was a subscriber to William Stitt's The Practical Architect's Ready Assistant; or Builder's Complete Companion(Dublin, 1819). His business and household papers in the National Archives and National Library of Ireland are a very rich source of information about architecture and everyday life in Ireland in the years 1787-1825.

Addresses:(6) 1 Little Longford Street, 1799-1826; 42 Great Ship Street, 1829-1835 (as 'Bryan & Bolger, Architects').

See WORKS and BIBLIOGRAPHY. BIBLIOGRAPHY.



References

Unless otherwise indicated all information in this entry is from E. McParland, 'The papers of Bryan Bolger, measurer', Dublin Historical Record 25, no. 4, Sep 1972, 120-131.

(1) So described when he witnessed the will of Edward Bulkeley, of Dublin, on 11 Aug 1899 (E. Ellis & P.B. Eustace, eds., Registry of Deeds Dublin: Abstracts of Wills III 1785-1832 (1984), 305.)
(2) TCD muniments, MUN/P/2/152, 162, 174, 178, 185, 187, 189, 191, 195, 197, 198, 202, 204, 209, 219 234, 244, 246, 250, 253.
(3) NA/SPO, 543/315/5.
(4) Thomas Kelly, 'Papers of Bryan Bolger. 1792-1834', Dublin Historical Record 3, no. 1, 10.
(5) NA/PRO, Bolger MSS, 1A/58/133.
(6) Kelly, op. cit., 12-13.
(7) From Wilson's Dublin Directory.


6 work entries listed in chronological order for BOLGER, BRYAN


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Building: CO. DUBLIN, DUBLIN, CLARENDON STREET, CHURCH OF ST TERESA (RC, DISCALCED CARMELITES)
Date: 1793
Nature: Attribution to BB suggested by McParland, but see TIMOTHY BEAHAN.
Refs: E. McParland, 'The Papers of Bryan Bolger, Measurer', Dublin Historical Record 25. no.4, Sep 1972, 121.

Building: CO. DUBLIN, DUBLIN, RANELAGH ROAD, CARMELITE CONVENT OF ST JOSEPH
Date: 1805
Nature: Extension supervised by BB
Refs: Reportorium Novum 1963-4, 348-356

Building: CO. DUBLIN, DUBLIN, ORMOND QUAY, HOUSE FOR JOSEPH WADE
Date: 1808
Nature: BB directed work on new house
Refs: NA/PRO. Bolger MSS, 1A/58/125

Building: CO. FERMANAGH, CORRARD HOUSE
Date: 1825
Nature: With James Bolger, for Sir Abraham Bradley King
Refs: NA/PRO, Bolger MSS, 1A/58/129

Building: CO. DUBLIN, DUBLIN, RICHMOND STREET NORTH, CHRISTIAN BROTHERS' SCHOOL
Date: 1828-1831
Nature: By Bryan or James Bolger. FS laid 9 Jun 1828.
Refs: O'Connell School Centenary Record (Dublin, 1928) states that BB superintended building, but cf. Pettigrew & Oulton's Dublin Almanac (1847), 'Annals of Dublin' (1828, June 9)

Building: CO. DUBLIN, DUBLIN, BAGGOT STREET LOWER, CONVENT OF SISTERS OF MERCY
Date: ?
Nature: BB architect
Refs: Reportorium Novum 1963-4, 353

Author Title Date Details
Bolger, Bryan [MS. notebooks and papers] 1787-1825 NA/PRO, Bolger MSS, 1A/58/124-133; NLI, MS 10/711.
Kelly, Thomas 'Papers of Bryan Bolger, 1792-1834, measurer' 1940 Dublin Historical Record 3, no. 1, 8-18.
Mcparland, Edward 'The papers of Bryan Bolger, Measurer' 1972 Dublin Historical Record 25, no. 4, 120-131.