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William Allingham

Chronology of William Allingham

19 March 1824 William Allingham is born in Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal, the eldest of five surviving children.
1833 His mother dies when Allingham is nine years old.
1837 He is sent to Boarding School at Killeshandra, Co. Cavan where he is unhappy.
1838 His father's health deteriorates. Allingham leaves school and takes up employment at a local bank where his father is manager.
1843 First visit to London. Begins correspondence with essayist and editor Leigh Hunt who supports Allingham's literary ambitions.
1846 Enters Customs Service as Principal Coast Officer in Donegal town, happy to quit bank job.
1846 Allingham starts collecting words of folk songs and ballads during his work-related travels, and writes ballads himself.
1847 and after Allingham meets Leigh Hunt and members of his circle (T. Carlyle, C. Patmore, and others) on holiday visits to London.
1849 Allingham is transferred to Ramsey, Isle of Man.
1850 He publishes his first book of poetry, dedicated to Leigh Hunt. It is not a commercial success. Allingham spends his holidays in London, meeting members of the Pre-Raphaelites such as D. G. Rossetti.
1850 Transferred to Coleraine.
1850 Meets Tennyson who had praised Allingham's poems at Twickenham.
1854 He resigns from the Customs Service, hoping to devote himself full-time to literature. Day and Night Songs published. After a few months he re-enters the Customs. He is posted to New Ross, Co. Wexford.
1854 First correspondence with Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Their letters cover the period 1854–1870.
1855 Allingham is posted to Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal. Day and Night Songs reissued with illustrations by Pre-Raphaelites Rossetti, Millais, and Hughes.
1855 The Music Master published.
1860 Nightingale Valley published.
1860 Poems published in Boston.
1862 Transfers to the London Docklands, he falls ill, has a nervous breakdown, and returns to Ballyshannon to recover.
1863 Transfers to the Customs in Lymington, Hampshire. He stays in England and visits friends, such as Tennyson, who live on the Isle of Wight. Laurence Bloomfield in Ireland published in serial form in Frazer's Magazine.
1864 Laurence Bloomfield in Ireland published as a book. The Ballad Book published. On recommendation of Lord Palmerston he is awarded an civil-list pension of £60 for his poetry annually.
1865 Fifty Modern Poems published.
1866 Allingham's father dies. William travels to Ireland for the last time.
1870 He retires from his Customs job and becomes sub-editor of Frazer's Magazine. His civil-list pension is increased to £ 100 annually.
1873 Rambles by Patricius Walker, a selection of poems fromFrazer's Magazine, published in book form.
1874 Allingham is appointed editor of Frazer's Magazine.
22 August 1874 Allingham marries Helen Mary Elizabeth Paterson, a watercolourist who is 24 years his junior, and a highly regarded illustrator of books and magazines.
1875 The couple lives in Chelsea. Their first child, Gerald Carlyle, is born.
1877 Songs, Ballads and Stories is published.
1877 Their second child, Eva Margaret, is born.
1879 Allingham resigns as editor of Frazer's Magazine. The Allinghams move to Sandhills near Witley, in Surrey.
1881 Allingham's long-standing friend Thomas Carlyle dies. The Allingham family moves to London.
1882 An Evil May-Day published.
1882 Their third child, Henry William, is born.
1883 The Play Ashby Manor published.
1884 Blackberries published.
1887 Irish Songs and Poems published.
1888 The Allinghams move to Hampstead.
1889 William Allingham's health deteriorates. Life and Phantasy published.
18 November 1889 Allingham dies at his home in Hampstead. He is cremated at Woking Cemetery.
1889 Allingham's ashes are buried in St. Anne's churchyard at Ballyshannon, where there is a commemorative slab.
1888–93 A collection of William Allingham's works in six volumes is published.
1893 Varieties in Prose is published.
1907 William Allingham: a Diary, edited by his wife Helen Allingham and Dollie Radford, is published. This work has remained in print for most of the 20th century.

Robert Welch, 'Allingham, William (1824–1889)', Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004.
Alan Warner, William Allingham: an introduction (Dublin 1971).
The Poems of William Allingham, edited with an introduction by John Hewitt (Dublin: Dolmen 1967).
William Allingham, The Diaries, edited by Helen Allingham and Dollie Radford, introduction by John Julius Norwich. (London: The Folio Society 1990).

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