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. Between 1790 and 1823 he was also employed as a measurer by Trinity College, Dublin. In February 1810 he was appointed measurer to the Board of Works in place of the disgraced DOMINICK MADDEN , a post for which he was recommended by the Attorney General and the Archbishop of Dublin. 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 . He was a member of the Bricklayers' and Plasterers' Guild of St Bartholomew 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. 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 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: 1 Little Longford Street, 1799-1826; 42 Great Ship Street, 1829-1835 (as 'Bryan & Bolger, Architects').
See WORKS and BIBLIOGRAPHY.
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.
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.)
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.
Thomas Kelly, 'Papers of Bryan Bolger. 1792-1834', Dublin Historical Record 3, no. 1, 10.
NA/PRO, Bolger MSS, 1A/58/133.
Kelly, op. cit., 12-13.
From Wilson's Dublin Directory.