At Keegan’s Irish Public House, it probably goes without saying but… we love Guinness.
…For more reasons than you might think! Ireland’s favorite beer has a history that is just as rich and deep as its draught. From Arthur Guinness’s innovative porter to his concern for the poor, he was a respected businessman whose legacy lives on around the world today.
Arthur Guinness leased an unused brewery in Dublin in 1759. The rent terms were 45 pounds a year for the next 9,000 years. His brewery would serve an important purpose. In Ireland at that time, people could not drink the water without getting sick. They did not yet have the science to purify water from microorganisms, so they avoided water all together. Instead, they drank alcohol. Because the import of liquor was forbidden in Ireland, bootleg gin was common and causing major problems in Irish society. Enter brewers like Guinness, who joined other Christians in brewing a safe drink that was lower in alcohol.
Mr. Guinness was a good man for other reasons. He paid his workers 20% more than most brewers did and provided healthcare. He also funded an Irish ambulance brigade similar to the Red Cross and built housing developments for the poor in Dublin. He started charities and established trusts that still help people in Ireland today. His legacy continued at the Guinness Company. During the World Wars, brewery workers who went to fight were guaranteed to keep their job, and the families still received some income while they were away.*
Just more than 250 years later, more than 10 million glasses of Guinness are enjoyed each day and it is served in more than 150 countries. You can come enjoy this Irish legacy with a hearty meal in our family-friendly, smoke free environment at Keegan’s Irish Pub!
*If you would like to read more about the history of Guinness, check out The Search for God and Guinness, by Stephen Mansfield, where many of the facts for this article were obtained.