Drogheda Municipal Art Collection

Boyne Viaduct, Drogheda

Henry Roper-Curzon

b. 1822 - d. 1892
1878 Watercolour on paper

In his watercolour of 1878, the Boyne viaduct is the focal point and looks both elegant and imposing, with the ships docked in the harbour emphasizing its scale and proportion. Opened in 2855 and still in use by Iarnród Éireann, the viaduct bridge represents an impressive feat of engineering skill and architectural vision. Built to clear the masts and sails of tall ships, it was to have a minimum clearance, at high water, of 27.4m, with a span of 76.2m and at least 18.29m left clear for shipping during construction. In Roper-Curzon’s rendering, there is a nice contrast between the steel framework of the bridge and oarsmen in a wooden skiff.

A watercolour painting of a Victorian viaduct and railway bridge crossing a river (Boyne). There is a steam engine and carriages travelling along the viaduct. The foreground is taken up with the depiction of the river with several large sailing vessels moored along docks on the right. There is a two-man rowing boat making its way up the river from the left foreground. The outline of a town (Drogheda) is visible beyond the viaduct.