Barry, David (1873–1938), businessman, was born 4 April 1873 in Ballycarry, Co. Antrim, son of William Barry, teacher, and Sarah Barry (née Weatherhead). In 1887 he joined the Belfast & Northern Counties Railway Co. and in 1891 he joined the shipping firm of G. & J. Burns, serving in the Larne, Glasgow, Liverpool, and Belfast offices before moving to Dublin (1908) to run the Burns-owned Dublin & Glasgow Steam Packet Co. In 1912 he became the secretary of the B & I Steam Packet Co., and in 1915 its general manager. During the first world war he managed the government-requisitioned vessels of the City of Dublin Steam Packet Co.; he was awarded an OBE (1919). In 1924 he joined the board of the B & I, in 1927 became a director, and in 1938 was appointed deputy chairman. Responsible for the creation of an excellent passenger and cargo service from Dublin to Liverpool, he played an important part in the development of the British market for Irish live cattle.
Elected to the Dublin Port and Docks Board in 1914 (chairman 1922) he met Rory O'Connor (qv) in the ballast office (April 1922) but failed to secure its evacuation by anti-treaty forces. A leading figure in the Dublin Chamber of Commerce (president 1928), he was unsuccessfully recommended for a nomination to the Free State senate in 1922 and in 1923 narrowly failed to secure election to the dáil for Co. Dublin as a member of the Businessmen's Party.
Forthright, highly efficient, and entirely single-minded, he was reputed to be a considerate employer. A presbyterian, he was described in the Irish Times as ‘a staunch protestant and a staunch northerner’. A member of the board of governors of St Andrews College, he was the Royal Danish Consul in the Irish Free State, the Irish director of the Yorkshire Insurance Company, and the chairman of the Irish Nautical College and Training School. He died 21 June 1938 after an illness of four months, leaving an estate worth £19,742.
He married Sarah J. Barry; they lived at Bellevue Park, Killiney, where as a hobby he ran a model farm of 90 acres.