The idea for a book of records begins in the early 1950s when Sir Hugh Beaver (1890—1967), Managing Director of the Guinness Brewery, attends a shooting party in County Wexford. There, he and his hosts argue about the fastest game bird in Europe, and fail to find an answer in any reference book.
Guinness World Records, known from its inception in 1955 until 2000 as The Guinness Book of Records and in previous United States editions as The Guinness Book of World Records, is a reference book published annually, listing world records both of human achievements and the extremes of the natural world. The brainchild of Sir Hugh Beaver, the book was co-founded by twin brothers Norris and Ross McWhirter in Fleet Street, London, in August 1954.
The book itself holds a world record, as the best-selling copyrighted book of all time. As of the 2019 edition, it is now in its 64th year of publication, published in 100 countries and 23 languages, and maintains over 53,000 records in its database. The international franchise has extended beyond print to include television series and museums. The popularity of the franchise has resulted in Guinness World Records becoming the primary international authority on the cataloguing and verification of a huge number of world records.The organisation employs record adjudicators to verify the authenticity of the setting and breaking of records.
Histoty: 10 November 1951, Sir Hugh Beaver, then the managing director of the Guinness Breweries,went on a shooting party in the North Slob, by the River Slaney in County Wexford, Ireland. After missing a shot at a golden plover, he became involved in an argument over which was the fastest game bird in Europe, the golden plover or the red grouse – it is the plover.That evening at Castlebridge House, he realised that it was impossible to confirm in reference books whether or not the golden plover was Europe's fastest game bird. Beaver knew that there must have been numerous other questions debated nightly in pubs throughout Ireland and abroad, but there was no book in the world with which to settle arguments about records. He realised then that a book supplying the answers to this sort of question might prove successful.
Beaver's idea became reality when Guinness employee Christopher Chataway recommended university friends Norris and Ross McWhirter, who had been running a fact-finding agency in London. The twin brothers were commissioned to compile what became The Guinness Book of Records, in August 1954. A thousand copies were printed and given away.
After the founding of The Guinness Book of Records office at 107 Fleet Street, London, the first 198-page edition was bound on 27 August 1955 and went to the top of the British best seller lists by Christmas. The following year, it launched in the US, and sold 70,000 copies. Since then, Guinness World Records has gone on to become a record breaker in its own right. With sales of more than 100 million copies in 100 countries and 37 languages.