Log in

Shirt Making in Derry

Derry City was, for years, built upon the textile trade with factories dominating the cityscape. A female workforce powered much of the industrial development of Derry, and produced some of the finest shirts in the world.It was the introduction of the factory system from the 1850’s which saw the real establishment of the shirt trade in the city, and contributed much to the city’s expansion and prosperity in the second half of the 19th century. The invention of the sewing machine in 1853 and the arrival of several Scottish businessmen ensured that, within ten years, the shirt industry in Derry was a factory based one.


Many Kilkie family members worked in the Derry factories, mainly for Tillie and Henderson but in earlier days for William Scott (as part of the outworker system). John McCloskey (husband of Susan Mary McCloskey nee Kilkie) was a shirt factory manager, probably in Tillie and Henderson's factory.

Last modified onThursday, 22 December 2016 08:26

Log in or Sign up

We use cookies to improve our website and your experience when using it. Cookies used for the essential operation of this site have already been set. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

  I accept cookies from this site.
EU Cookie Directive Module Information