The city of The Three Js: Jam, Jute and Journalism
Dundee is also where the PC games Lemmings and Grand Theft Auto were developed. If you had a Timex watch when you were a child this where it is likely to have been made. The same factory was used to make the Sinclair ZX Spectrum computer.
Dundee was also the centre of the Whaling Industry and built specialist ice-breaker ships. It was to Dundee that the famous Explorer Captain Scott turned to build a ship for his Antartic Expedition. His ship the RRS Discovery, is now berthed in the city harbour and forms part of a major redevelopment of the seafront.
When it was discovered that course jute fibre could be softened mechanically by the whale oil, no longer required for lamps, Dundee became the centre of the Jute industry, controlling and importing vast quanities of Jute fibre from Bengal and Bangladesh. This was woven into a course canvas cloth and used as sacking and the backing for linoleum (made in Kirkcaldy). Jute canvas was exported in enormous amounts to America, as sacks used to bale cotton and provided the cloth for the traditional covered wagons of the Wild West. If you are researching your family tree for ancestors from Dundee it is highly likely that there will be a Jute connections and you can visit The Verdant Works to see the history of this important industry.
Jam: Dundee Orange Marmalade
(Marmalade was originally a preserve made from quinces) James Keillor & Son Ltd (1787) was the first commercial brand of marmalade
A Spanish ship taking refuge from a storm in Dundee harbour was carrying a large cargo of Seville oranges. James Keillor bought them cheaply but found that owing to their bitterness he was unable to sell them. His ingenious wife, Janet, not wishing to waste the fruit, used the bitter oranges, to make some pots of preserve with added pieces of rind.. This proved to be so popular that the Dundee public demanded more. Several generations later, in 1797, another Mrs Keiller and her son James finally felt confident enough to build the world's first marmalade factory.