Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

Chairman of the Board of Works, 1864-1883. John McKerlie, the second but eldest surviving son of Captain Robert McKerlie, of Wigton, Scotland, was born in 1814 or 1815.(1) He entered the Royal Engineers in 1833. After being stationed for some years in Mauritius and working for the Ordnance Survey in England, during which period he rose to the rank of Colonel, he was appointed a Comissioner of the Irish Board of Works in 1855. In 1864 he succeeded Sir RICHARD GRIFFITH  RICHARD GRIFFITH as Chairman of the Board. He was created a Companion of the Order of the Bath in 1870 and knighted on his retirement in 1883. He died at his house, 3 Longford Terrace, Monkstown, on 7 January 1900. He had married in 1841 Sophia Caroline, daughter of Lieutenant General Henry John Savage. According to his obituary in Minutes and Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers, McKerlie 'carried out the duties of his post with unwearying zeal, and in times of political and agrarian atroubles even at personal risk', while his courtesy and kindness 'gained for him the title of "the poor man's friend"'. In his leisure time he was a keen sportsman, a painter and a lover of art, in which latter connection he served as a governor of the National Gallery of Ireland.

Inst.CE: elected associate, 21 January 1851.


All information in this entry is from the obituary of McKerlie in Min.Proc.Inst.CE140 (1899-1900. Pt II), 287-8, and Who was Who 1897-1916, 456.

(1) The date is given as 9 April 1814 in Who Was Who and as 1815 in MIn.Proc.Inst.CE.

1 work entries listed in chronological order for MCKERLIE, JOHN GRAHAM (SIR)

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Date: 1863a
Nature: Suggests method adopted for restoring to position roof timbers of Great Sugar Store using screw jacks &c.
Refs: Talk given by J.H. Owen to RIAI, noted in RIAI minutes, 19 Nov 1863, 132