Wolfe was articled in 1813 to the architect Joseph Gwilt and in 1818 he exhibited at the Royal Academy a design for a national museum. In Rome, in February 1820, Wolfe embarked on his friendship with Charles Barry.
After commencing architectural practice, he entered the competition for new buildings at King's College, Cambridge, with an unsuccessful Italian design. Soon, however, a less immediately congenial profession claimed him when he joined his brother as a stock- and sharebroker. Trading as Wolfe Brothers from 23 Change Alley, Cornhill, they built up a successful business, which continued until 1848. Wolfe was a member of the stock exchange until 1878.
On 6 October 1881 Wolfe died at the Great Western Hotel, Paddington; he was buried four days later at Brompton cemetery. He left much of his £140,000 estate to his godson, by then emerging as a successful engineer, who in later recognition changed his name to John Wolfe Barry.
(David G. Blissett)
Images Baptism at St Leonard's May 12 1798 and Freedom of the City of London