Sir Alfred Chester Beatty, the first honorary citizen of Ireland, is born in NY
- February 7, 1875
Sir Alfred Chester Beatty (7 February 1875 – 19 January 1968) was an American-British mining magnate and philanthropist. A successful businessman, Beatty was given the epithet “the King of Copper” in reference to his fortune. He became a naturalised British citizen in 1933, was knighted in 1954 and was made an honorary citizen of Ireland in 1957.
Sir Alfred Chester Beatty was born in New York City on February 7, 1875. He was an American mining magnate, philanthropist, and collector of art and manuscripts. Although he was born in the United States, Beatty became an honorary citizen of Ireland later in life.
Beatty’s career began in the mining industry, where he amassed considerable wealth through his involvement in copper mining operations in the United States. With his wealth, he pursued his passion for collecting rare books, manuscripts, and art from around the world.
In 1957, Beatty made a significant donation of his vast collection to Ireland, which included priceless treasures such as ancient manuscripts, rare books, and exquisite artworks. This donation formed the basis of the Chester Beatty Library, located in Dublin Castle, which is now one of Ireland’s most important cultural institutions.
For his philanthropy and contributions to Ireland’s cultural heritage, Sir Alfred Chester Beatty was granted honorary Irish citizenship in 1957. He was the first person to receive this honor, recognizing his deep connections to Ireland and his significant contributions to its cultural life.
Beatty’s legacy continues to be celebrated in Ireland and beyond, both for his philanthropy and for the extraordinary collection of art and manuscripts he assembled during his lifetime.