Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Hackman, Alfred

HACKMAN, ALFRED (1811–1874), sub-librarian at the Bodleian Library, was born at Fulham, near London, 8 April 1811. His father, Thomas Hackman, was the parochial vestry clerk, and his office brought him into connection with the Bishop of London (William Howley). Through Howley's influence Hackman matriculated as a servitor of Christ Church, Oxford, 25 Oct. 1832. He had been educated in France, and had then spent some years as usher in a boarding-school kept by his father. He graduated B.A. in 1837, and M.A. in 1840. Through the influence of Dean Gaisford he obtained a temporary post in the Bodleian Library in 1837, and was connected with the library for more than thirty-five years afterwards. In 1837 he also became chaplain of Christ Church, and curate to the Rev. Henry Gary at St. Paul's, Oxford. He was appointed by his college vicar of Cowley, near Oxford, in 1839, and was from 1841 to 1873 precentor at Christ Church. From 1844 to 1871 he was vicar of St. Paul's, Oxford. Here he exercised a considerable influence as a preacher, not only on his own parishioners, but also on the undergraduates of the university, who were attracted by his earnestness and quaint vivacity. Curates carefully attended to his parish, while his own time was largely occupied by his duties in the Bodleian Library, where in 1862 he was appointed sub-librarian. Failing health induced him to retire from the library and to resign his chaplaincy at Christ Church in 1873. He died, unmarried, in his brother's house at Long Ditton, Surrey, on 18 Sept, 1874. He published 'A Catalogue of the Collection of the Tanner MSS. in the Bodleian,' 4to, Oxford, 1860, which is very carefully executed.

[Oxford Univ. Herald, 26 Sept. 1874; Macray's Annals of Bodleian Libr. 2nd ed., p. 387; private knowledge and information.]

W. A. G.