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George Parker Bidder (1806-1878), Engineer

Sitter in 5 portraits
As a child, Bidder had an extraordinary ability to handle numbers without writing them down, and his father, a stonemason, exhibited him widely as a 'calculating boy'. In 1824, he began work in the Ordnance Survey but left the following year to become an assistant to Henry Robinson Palmer, engineer of the London Dock Company. This was the start of a varied and successful career as a civil engineer. He was a friend of Robert Louis Stephenson, and contributed to the planning and construction of railways including the London & Birmingham Railway. He was also one of the founders of the Electric Telegraph Company where he worked on the development of transatlantic cables.

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George Parker Bidder

by William Brockedon
black chalk and wash, circa 1825
NPG 2515(15)


George Parker Bidder

by Edward William Wyon
marble bust, circa 1855
NPG 5163


George Parker Bidder

by Henry Meyer, after W. Waite
aquatint and stipple engraving, published 1817
NPG D31759


George Parker Bidder

by Mary Dawson Turner (née Palgrave), after John Sell Cotman
etching, 1819
NPG D22561