Arthur Guinness, Brewer and the Founder of the Guinness Brewery, Dies

  • January 23, 1803

Arthur Guinness (1724 or 1725 - 23 January 1803)

At 27, in 1752, Guinnesss godfather Arthur Price, the Church of Ireland Archbishop of Cashel, bequeathed him £ 100 in his will. Guinness invested the money and in 1755 had a brewery at Leixlip, just 17 km from Dublin. In 1759, Guinness went to the city and set up his own business. He took a 9,000 year lease on the 4 - acre (16,000 m2) brewery at St. Jamess Gate from the descendants of Sir Mark Rainsford for an annual rent of £45.

Guinness leased a brewery in Leixlip in 1755, brewing ale. Five years later he left his younger brother in charge of that enterprise and moved on to another in St. James Gate, Dublin, at the end of 1759. Visitors to the brewery can see the 9,000-year lease he signed for it, effective from 31 December 1759. By 1767 he was the master of the Dublin Corporation of Brewers. His first actual sales of porter were listed on tax (excise) data from 1778, and it seems that other Dublin brewers had experimented in brewing porter beer from the 1760s. His major achievement was in expanding his brewery in 1797-99. Thereafter he brewed only porter and employed members of the Purser family who had brewed porter in London from the 1770s. The Pursers became partners in the brewery for most of the 19th century. By his death in 1803 the annual brewery output was over 20,000 barrels. Subsequently Arthur and-or his beer was nicknamed Uncle Arthur in Dublin.