Thursday Doors – Dundalk Museum 2

Welcome to part 2 of Thursday Doors tour of Dundalk Museum. I thought the display of homes through the ages was so appropriate for this blog that I took a photo of every one of them, from the humble labourer’s cottage to the period town house. They even included some models of ancient dwellings from the Iron Age.

Dundalk has a long history as an industrial town producing linen, whiskey, stout, beer and tobacco. Some of these goods are still manufactured today.

Flax was grown locally to supply the linen trade and I have found some of my ancestors recorded in 1796 as having received a free spinning wheel for growing an acre of flax. If they had grown five acres they would have been given a loom. From the 1750s water power was used to extract the fibre and finish the cloth but in the 1830s steam powered spinning mills were built and two decades later the power loom was introduced putting an end to a cottage industry. On the English census my ancestors in Lancashire went from being called hand loom weavers, working in their homes to being described as factory workers because they had to go to a mill to get employment. Thankfully, there are people in parts of Ireland hand loom weaving today so the skill hasn’t been completely lost.

Tobacco Industry
Brewing and Distilling

Having a busy port and England just across the water was a big advantage for the town’s industries. The harbour and its docks created a lot of employment too.

Where there is a lot of industrial activity a fire station is very important.

Lastly, we have one of my favourite exhibits – The Heinkel. For a few short years in the 1950s the town became a centre for the production of this amazing wee bubblecar when Dundalk Engineering Works purchased the worldwide rights to manufacture it. Unfortunately, the Heinkel Cabin Cruiser ceased production when cars like the Mini Cooper hit the market and were much more in demand.

Thanks for coming along on Part 2 of this Dundalk Museum tour and if you’d like to see more Thursday Doors from around the world, head on over to Dan’s blog.


About Jean Reinhardt

Author of 'A Pocket Full of Shells' an Amazon International best seller, Jean writes young adult and historical fiction. She has been known to shed a tear over Little House on the Prairie.
This entry was posted in Blogging, dundalk, History, Ireland, social issues, society, Thursday Doors and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Thursday Doors – Dundalk Museum 2

  1. Dan Antion says:

    This is a fabulous tour, Jean. You included so many of my favorite things (including the fire station & equipment). This truly sounds like a hard working town. Perhaps it was in a location that worked for multiple industries. Very nice post – thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, gorgeous. For a moment there, I felt like a giant.
    Thanks for a most informative visit. I loved the weee bauble car and the fireman helmet too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That was a cool arm-chair tour through the ages! I also enjoyed the selfie and seeing just a bit of you too.
    The bubble car seemed a bit avant garde too bad it wasn’t popular.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Love it! I like seeing historic photos and artifacts explaining the hisory of a place. Wonderful share!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. marianallen says:

    Love this post! I love historical museums, especially ones with models. Oh, and I’ll have a stout, please.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jennie says:

    Wonderful post, Jean. I love museums, especially those with history.

    Liked by 1 person

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