PEMBERTON, BENJAMIN *
- Born: 1772? Died: -
Builder and civil engineer, of Dublin, active from the 1790s. Benjamin Pemberton  appears to have been a son of BENJAMIN PEMBERTON  and a grandson of BENJAMIN PEMBERTON  . He is almost certainly the person of the same name, who was born in Dublin in 1772 to Benjamin Pemberton and Mary Ann Gumley and married Anne Facon at St Michan's church, Dublin, on 17 November 1792.(1) Benjamin Pemberton was admitted a Freeman of the City of Dublin at Michaelmas 1792 as a member of the Guild of Bricklayers and Plasterers by virtue of birth.(2) He became master of the Guild in 1812; in his inaugural address he deplored sectarianism and political corruption within the Guild, which turned qualified Catholics away while admitting large numbers of non-craft members.(3) He may be the Benjamin Pemberton of Park Street who was described in a report on Dublin brick and stone layers compiled in March 1834 as having been in good business circa 1800 but was now living on in reduced circumstances' because of the decline in trade.(4)
A Benjamin Pemberton appears with a variety of designations and several different addresses in Wilson's Dublin Directory over the years 1814-1836, being listed as follows: as bricklayer at 6 Longford Street in 1814; as 'engineer, mason and bricklayer' at 38 Jervis Street, 1818-1821; as 'builder and civil engineer' at 9 Constitution Hill, 1826-1828, at 21 Moore Street, 1829-1830, at 16 Langrishe Place, Summerhill, 1831-1834; and as 'civil engineer' at 4 Lurgan Street, 1836. Benjamin Pemberton, civil engineer, also appears at 15 Kennedy's Lane in 1845-1847.(5)
(2) 'An alphabetical list of the Freemen of the City of Dublin, 1774-1824', The Irish Ancestor XV (1983), Nos. 1 & 2, 97.
(3) C.P. Curran, Dublin Decorative Plasterwork of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries (1967), 5.
(4) Royal Irish Academy, Haliday MS 4B 31; this manuscript is a copy of a report presented to Daniel O'Connell in 1834 to support the argument for repealing the Act of Union by describing the catastrophic impact the Act had had on the tradesmen of Dublin.
(5) Jones transcript from trades section of Thom's directories; also Pettigrew & Oulton's Dublin Almanac (1847) in street directory section.