Mr John Ryan BRENAN (1798 - 1868)**

  • Date of Birth: 01/01/1798
  • Place of Birth: Ireland
  • Date of Death: 05/06/1868
  • Place of Death: Petersham, New South Wales, Australia
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Parliamentary Service

Member of the NSW Legislative Assembly21 Aug 185628 Oct 18562mth(s) 8day(s)
Member for Cumberland (South Riding)21 Aug 185628 Oct 18562mths 8days
1st (1856 - 1857)
Election voided on the Report of the Elections and Qualifications Committee, on a petition lodged against his election.

Qualifications, occupations and interests

Lawyer (solicitor) and a landowner with large holdings prior to migration. Arrived in Sydney in June 1834, promising to invest £2,000. Established a private legal practice and became solicitor to the Bank of Australasia. Coroner for Sydney in 1835. Superintendent of convicts from 1836 to 1837, until the Colonial Office over-ruled his appointment. Appointed third police magistrate in Sydney by Gipps but lost the position in 1844, when the city council refused to pay him. He practiced as a solicitor whilst holding government appointments. Between 1836 and 1839 owned a farm and cattle station near Parramatta. In 1856, owned large estates in either the South Cumberland or West Camden electorate. He moved to West Maitland where he practised as a solicitor until his death.


Son of John Brenan, gentleman, and his wife Maria Ryan. Married (1) Cecilia Mahon and had issue 2 sons. Married (2) Anna Maria Price in 1826.

Additional Information

Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 1. P. Loveday and A. W. Martin, 'Parliament, Factions and Parties', Melbourne, 1966, pp 12, 13.