Edward Orpen Moriarty (1825 - 1896)

Moriarty was the eldest son of Edward Orpen Moriarty born in County Kerry and educated at Trinity College, Dublin. Moriarty worked briefly as a cadet on constructing the breakwater on the Isle of Portland. He reached Sydney with his family and set up as a consulting engineer and surveyor. On 1 June 1849 he became an assistant in the Surveyor-General’s Department. In 1853-55 he was engineer and surveyor (later chairman) for the Steam Navigation Board and in 1855-58 engineer for Hunter River improvements. In October 1858 he became engineer-in-chief for harbours and river navigation in the Department of Works with a salary of £1100. In January-October 1862 he was commissioner and engineer-in-chief for roads and in 1865 a superannuation fund commissioner. He controlled the building of water supply schemes for Wollongong, Bathurst, Wagga Wagga, Albury and Hunter Valley towns. In 1867 he was a commissioner for Sydney’s water supply and in 1869-70 president of the Hunter River Floods Commission.

Permitted to engage in private projects, he supervised the building of two bridges for the Penrith Nepean Bridge Co. in the 1850s and Pyrmont Bridge in 1865-66. In 1869 he confessed his ‘habit of receiving private pupils for instruction’ and in 1874 investigated the Grey River entrance for the New Zealand government.

In 1875 Moriarty became a member of the Public Works Tender Board and the Sewerage and Health Board. To the government he suggested plans for a haven at Trial Bay by using prison labour to build a mile-long (1.6 km) breakwater across the entrance. Work began in 1877 but stopped in 1903 after over £160,000 had been spent. From 1877 he had an extra £300 a year as engineer of Sydney’s water supply. In 1878 he studied such works in England and North America as docks, breakwaters and river-locks.

Moriarty was a councillor of the Philosophical Society and a member of the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron and the Linnean Society of New South Wales. In 1852 he had published a pamphlet A few Practical Hints upon Roads, and Roads Systems. He retired on 31 December 1888 with a pension of £791 13s. and went to England. He died at Southsea, Hampshire, on 18 September 1896 and was survived by his wife Leila Helen, née Geary, whom he had married in Brisbane on 18 May 1853. He left her his estate valued at £5800.

Showing all 4 results

Showing all 4 results

Choose currency

Exchange rates are only indicative. All orders will be processed in Australian dollars. The actual amount charged may vary depending on the exchange rate and conversion fees applied by your credit card issuer.



The List

Join our exclusive mailing list for first access to new acquisitions and special offers.