Ever wondered how the New York Garment District got its start? What happened to it and where it is heading?
In the Mid 19th century, New York City’s Garment District was built on ready to wear clothing that was mass produced and mass-marketed. The industry relied on the workings of a cheap yet skilled labor force—primarily immigrants of European Jewish and Italian descent who arrived in the United States trained in traditional tailoring.
During this time the garment industry was New York City’s largest employer, employing one hundred thousand people each year. Rapid growth was seen in twenty years when the amount of manufacturing firms increased from 562 in 1880 to over 1,800 in the 1900s.
In an effort to increase New York City’s shopping culture Fashion Row and Ladies Mile were