Boely was a French musician, starting life as a pianist. He became organist late in life, being first appointed to a position at the age of 49. In 1840 he was appointed organist at St-Germain-l'Auxerrois, in Paris. Here he modified the organ to add a German style pedalboard and several stops allowing him to play the music of Bach. His style wasn't liked - it was too boring and old fashioned for his congregation, who expected operatic works, such as those by Lefubure-Wely. He was sacked in 1851 and died a lowly piano teacher. However, he was sought out by Franck and Saint-Saens to teach them.
Boely was heavily influenced by Bach. He played pieces by him every Sunday at home and supposedly the only picture in Boely's house was a portrait of Bach.
I was introduced to Boely's works by Daniel Roth (not personally!) but through his CD a couple of years ago. I was immediately hooked. I had no idea who he was but this music stood out from other mid-19th century French works. It was baroque in nature, at times bordering plagiarism of Bach.
His 24 pieces is unlike other French 24 pieces, it doesn't go through the 24 key signatures but is a collection of 5 suites of pieces in 5 different keys, with a final piece in a 6th key.
It is hard to classify Boely. He is solidly in the romantic era, but rejected much of what was being written by his contemporaries, preferring to write in baroque style and play music of baroque masters.