1749-1813; b. Co. Leitrim; ed. TCD; rector of several parishes in Dublin;
Essay on the Population of Dublin in 1798 (1805), the first systematic
census of Dublin, compiled in 1798; followed by A History of the City
of Dublin with John Warburton, concluded by Robert Walsh (2 vols.
1818). RR ODNB DIB.
Dictionary of National Biography calls him a statistician and philanthropist;
BA TCD 1771; livings of St Jamess and St Catherines, Dublin,
also Castlereagh [Castlerea] with St. Catherines; formed Meath charitable
loan, 1808; made Dublin city census, 1798-1805; began with John Warbuton
the History of Dublin, completed by Robert Walsh (1818). DIB adds,
obtained living of St Catherines in Liberties of Dublin; several
charitable institutions, and securederasmus Smith Free School for the
Coombe; Essay on the Population of Dublin in 1798; collaborated
with Warburton. d. 4 Feb 1813 from fever contracted visiting poor parishioners.
See also biographical article in Richard Ryan, Biographia Hibernica,
Irish Worthies (1821), Vol. II.
Wretched of the earth: I have frequently surprised from ten to fifteen persons in a room
not fifteen feet square, stretched on a wad of filthy straw, swarming
with vermin, and without covering, save the wretched rags that constitute
their wearing apparel ... a degree of filth and stench inconceivable,
except by such as have visited those scenes of wretchedness. (An
Essay on the Pop. of Dublin, Graisberry & Campbell, 1805, p.50; cited
in Kevin C. Kearns, Dublin Tenement Life, An Oral History (Dublin:G&M
1994), Introduction, p.1.
Essay on the Population of Dublin in 1798 (1805), the first systematic census of Dublin, compiled in 1798, Whitelaw count a total population of 182,370 (of which 20% were assigned to the upper and middle class); in the History of the City of Dublin, with Warburton and Walsh (1818), he listed the upper cLass before the Union as including 249 temporal peers, 22 spiritual peers, and 300 MPs, being reduced to 29, 6 and 5 respectively afterwards ((Vol. II, p.1168); further, great numbers who formerly were in the habit of reading are by this act interdicted from doing so; Dublin become a backwater, Now, the lively tumult is at rest, and all is secret or silent, as in a Turkish Divan. (ibid., pp.1157-58; all cited in Ricard Cargill Cole, Irish Booksellers and English Writers, 1740-1800, 1986, p.153.)