Dundee at Work
People and Industries Through the Years
Series: At Work
- Gregor Stewart
15th August 2017
Dundee is rightly proud of its industrial heritage and today can lay claim to being at the forefront of developments in many areas of scientific research and technology. The eighteenth century saw the city’s population grow rapidly with the expansion of the whaling industry and the development of the jute trade. Dundee was dominated by its jute industry throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and at its peak some 50,000 people in the city worked in sixty-two mills, often in appalling conditions. At the same time, the supporting industries of whaling and shipbuilding also expanded, as well as smaller industries such as marmalade production and publishing, earning the city the nickname of ‘City of Three Js’ – Jam, Jute and Journalism.
Dundee at Work explores the life of Scotland’s fourth largest city and its people, from pre-industrial beginnings through to the present day. In a fascinating series of contemporary photographs and illustrations, it takes us through the dramatic rise and fall of the jute industry, the traumas of industrial decline and high unemployment between the wars and post-war recovery with the arrival of light engineering companies such as Timex and NCR. It takes us into the technologically advanced world of today, showing how Dundee has successfully transformed itself from the three J’s to a thriving university city and centre of biomedical and biotechnology research as well as a leading player in the information technology and video game industries.