Basic Biographical Details

Name: John Bryce
Designation: Architect
Born: c. 1805
Died: 13 August 1851
Bio Notes: John Bryce, born c.1805 (he was christened on 25 April 1806) was the youngest of the three architect sons of William Bryce, a builder in Buccleuch Place, Edinburgh who subsequently described himself as an architect. Of the two elder sons William worked in the office of William Burn but died on 5 September 1823, his brother David inheriting his place in that office and becoming responsible for his family. Nothing specific is known of John's training - initially he probably worked with his father, but thereafter he was probably either in Burn's office or assisting David with his private practice at 53 Castle Street. By at least 1833 he was in Glasgow designing the Jews Cemetery in Glasgow (Fir Park) Necropolis, followed by the McGavin Monument (1834) and the fašade of the catacombs (1836) in the same cemetery. Of those the McGavin monument and the Catacombs can be related to his brother David's collection of baroque engravings and the copies he made from books to which he had access. This suggests that John may have helped Burn's office with the detailing of Harlaxton.

John Bryce's later work was more classical. The large Duke Street Reformatory (1838) is recorded only in an engraving but seems to have been austere Roman Doric. Around 1840 he replaced George Smith as architect to the solicitors and developers McHardy and Fullerton, designing their North Woodside development in a Renaissance manner close to that of Burn and Bryce with a particular liking for square columns; and by the later 1840s he was associated with Alexander Kirkland, then professing only to be a civil engineer, in James Scott of Kelly's Bothwell Street development. The similarity of the architecture at the same developer's Stobcross estate suggests that Bryce also had a hand in Minerva Street, Stobcross (now St Vincent) Crescent and Corunna Street laid out in 1849 and nominally at least the work of Kirkland.

John was married to Ann (or Annie) and they had five children (or possibly six - Census Records are unclear). John Bryce died of 'debility' on 13 August 1851 at the age of 46 and was buried in Glasgow Necropolis (Gamma 27). The family returned to live in Edinburgh after the John's death and were living at 2 Maryfield Duddingston in 1861. His son John who was born about 1843 and therefore a child when his father died, subsequently joined his uncle David's practice.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 4Edinburgh, ScotlandPrivatec. 1805Before 1833Place of birth
Item 2 of 4Glasgow, ScotlandBusinessBefore 1833  
Item 3 of 4189, Buchanan Street, Glasgow, ScotlandPrivate/business(?)c. 18341845 
Item 4 of 4243, Buchanan Street, Glasgow, ScotlandPrivate/business1851 *  

* earliest date known from documented sources.

Employment and Training


The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this architect (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 1David BryceBefore 1833 Assistant 

Employees or Pupils

The following individuals were employed or trained by this architect (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 1William SpenceBefore 1832(?)Before 1837Assistant(?) 

Buildings and Designs

This architect was involved with the following buildings or structures from the date specified (click on an item to view details):
 Date startedBuilding nameTown, district or villageIslandCity or countyCountryNotes
Item 1 of 9 Garnethill speculative development  GlasgowScotlandDate unknown
Item 2 of 9c. 1830Glasgow Necropolis, screen wall and Bridge of Sighs etcDennistoun GlasgowScotlandScreen wall etc
Item 3 of 91833Glasgow Necropolis, Jews Burial Ground, gate and columnDennistoun GlasgowScotland 
Item 4 of 91834Glasgow Necropolis, William McGavin MonumentDennistoun GlasgowScotland 
Item 5 of 91836Glasgow Necropolis, Fašade to CatacombsDennistoun GlasgowScotland 
Item 6 of 91838Duke Street Reformatory  GlasgowScotland 
Item 7 of 91840North Woodside Development  GlasgowScotland 
Item 8 of 91849Bothwell Chambers  GlasgowScotlandDetails - in association with Alexander Kirkland
Item 9 of 91851Glasgow Necropolis, Monument to Rev William Brash  GlasgowScotland 


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
Item 1 of 5British Architectural Library, RIBA2001Directory of British Architects 1834-1914   
Item 2 of 5Colvin, H M1995A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects 1600-18403rd editionNew Haven and London: Yale University Press 
Item 3 of 5Gomme, Andor and Walker, David1987Architecture of GlasgowSecond revised ednLondon: Lund Humphries 
Item 4 of 5Pagan, J1847Sketch of the History of Glasgow   
Item 5 of 5Post Office Directories     

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this architect:
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 1Census records onlineCensuses