The parish of St Ann was created in 1707 at a time when the 18th century suburbs were beginning to envelop the site provided for the church by Sir Joshua Dawson, from whom the name of the street is derived. Together with Viscount Molesworth, he was responsible for creating some of Dublin's most fashionable streets.
Dawson Street (1709), Grafton Street (1713), Ann Street (1718), and Molesworth Street (c. 1725). The rapidly evolving suburb attracted members of the aristocracy, the gentry, professional classes, and prelates of the Church, including the Anglican Archbishops of Dublin.
There were private pews in the church to accommodate distinguished residents like the Duke of Leinster, the Archbishop, and the Lord Mayor. The Huguenots, many of whom lived within, or just over 500 metres outside the parish boundaries, also feature in parish records.The Huguenot Cemetery is in Merrion Row, some 300 metres from the church.
St Ann's Church on Dawson Street (beside The Mansion House) maintains a very busy city centre ministry dating back to 1707.