Haliday, Charles (DNB00)

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HALIDAY, CHARLES (1789–1866), antiquary, born in 1789, was son of William Halliday or Haliday, an apothecary in Dublin, and younger brother of William Haliday [q.v.] He passed some of his early years in London, and about 1812 began business in Dublin as a merchant. He took an active part in the attempts to ameliorate the condition of the poor, especially during the cholera at Dublin in 1832. He was in 1833 elected a member of the corporation for improving the harbour of Dublin and superintending the lighthouses on the Irish coasts, and to the affairs of this body his attention was mainly devoted through life. Haliday acquired considerable wealth, erected a costly villa near Dublin, and formed a large collection of books and tracts. He filled for many years the posts of consul for Greece, secretary of the chamber of commerce, Dublin, and director of the Bank of Ireland. His public services to the commercial community of Dublin were acknowledged by presentations of addresses and plate on two occasions. He died at Monkstown, near Dublin, 14 Sept. 1866. In 1847 Haliday was elected a member of the Royal Irish Academy, to which body a large portion of the books and tracts collected by him were presented by his widow, and a catalogue of them has been completed by the writer of the present notice. A portrait of Haliday is preserved with his collection at the Royal Irish Academy.

Haliday was author of the following pamphlets:

  1. ‘An Inquiry into the Influence of the Excessive Use of Spirituous Liquors in producing Crime, Disease, and Poverty in Ireland’ (anon.), Dublin, 1830.
  2. ‘The Necessity of combining a Law of Settlement with Local Assessment in the proposed Bill for the Relief of the Poor of Ireland’ (anon.), Dublin, 1838.
  3. ‘A Letter to the Commissioners of Landlord and Tenant Inquiry on the State of the Law in respect of the Building and Occupation of Houses in towns in Ireland’ (anon.), Dublin, 1844.
  4. ‘An Appeal to the Lord-Lieutenant [of Ireland] on behalf of the Labouring Classes,’ Dublin, 1847, in relation to the rights of the poor in the vicinity of Kingstown, near Dublin.
  5. ‘A Letter to the Right Hon. Sir William Somerville, Bart., M.P., from the Corporation for Preserving and Improving the Port of Dublin, with Observations on the Report of Captain Washington, R.N., to the Harbour Department of the Admiralty on the state of the Harbours and Lighthouses on the South and South-West of Ireland,’ Dublin, 1849.

Haliday collected some material for a history of the port and commerce of Dublin from early times, but he did not live to complete the work. The results of his labours were embodied in the three following papers:

  1. ‘On the Ancient Name of Dublin,’ printed in the ‘Transactions of the Royal Irish Academy,’ vol. xxii. 1854.
  2. ‘Observations explanatory of a plan and estimate for a Citadel at Dublin, 1673.’
  3. ‘On the Scandinavian Antiquities of Dublin.’ Portions of the last paper were communicated to the Royal Irish Academy in 1857.

The whole of it, together with the second paper, was published with the title of ‘The Scandinavian Kingdom of Dublin’ (Dublin, 1881), under the editorship of John P. Prendergast, esq. An unfinished treatise on the ‘sanitary condition of Kingstown’ by Haliday was published at Dublin in 1867 by Thomas M. Madden, M.D.

[Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy; Webb's Irish Biography; private information.]

J. T. G.