Read Holliday and Sons, Limited

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Read Holliday & Sons, Ltd., was a chemical and dye manufacturer originally established in 1830 by Read Holliday (1809-1889), later involving his sons Thomas, Charles, Robert and Edgar.

The firm was a pioneer in the manufacture of synthetic dyes and by the mid-1860s had become an international company with dyeworks in Brooklyn, New York.

Read Holliday and Sons became a private company in 1890, although it struggled to compete against lower priced dyes manufacturer in Germany in the 1890s. The outbreak of the Boer War led to the company also manufacturing picric acid for explosives.

The firm became British Dyes Limited[1] in 1915 following a takeover by the British Government in order to concentrate on manufacturing explosives and picric acid. Lionel Brook Holliday, grandson of Read, received around £10,000 from the takeover and used it to establish dye manufacturer L.B. Holliday & Co. Ltd. at Deighton.

Notes and References

  1. British Dyes Limited became British Dyestuffs Corporation. in 1919 and then ICI in 1926.