Arthur Guinness started brewing with £100.
It was 1752, he was 27 years old, and his godfather left him the money in his will. A man with foresight, or at least willing to take a risk, three years later he was running his own brewery making ale in Leixlip. Arthur must have been thinking big even then, and it wasn’t long before he headed for Dublin and agreed a 9,000 year lease on a four acre site – the year was 1759 and Guinness as a brewer of porter was founded.By 1767 he was the master of the Dublin Corporation of Brewers and managed to expand his operations extensively during 1797–99. The brewery was producing more than 20,000 barrels a year when he died in 1803.
As a man he was highly respected for his actions to improve the lives of people in communities where Guinness did business. This philosophy carried through after his death, and in 1876 Guinness was one of the first businesses in Ireland to provide proper pensions and healthcare for its employees and their families. Guinness the brewery and Guinness the family continued this generosity over the years, and have given land for recreational areas, financial support to education initiatives, and funding for low income housing in parts of Dublin.
It’s Guinness’s 250th birthday this year and the 24th of September is to be known as Arthur’s Day. An impressive line-up of events are planned and leading musical artists will be performing in celebrations around the world, and at 17:59 on that day we’re invited to raise a glass of Guinness to toast the man himself.
Here’s a taster…
Guinness really is one of Irelands greatest exports and enjoyed by the Irish and non-Irish alike, I wonder if he knew something when he signed that lease, imagine the celebrations in 2659!
Slainte, cheers, prost, salut, yung sing, gezondheid, skal…
Thirsty now, off for a pint meself!