Fabrica Gallifa

The Gallifa factories. Source: Photographic holdings of the Museu del Ter

The Gallifa factories: halfway between a factory and a company town

Author: Marina Cirera Gaja

The Gallifa factories were cotton mills  located in the Voltreganès area, specifically within the municipality of Masies de Voltregà, where by the end of the 19th century a small group of houses had been established. The subsequent expansion of this settlement did not come about until the 1950s, with the construction of the Sant Salvador Development, which was built within the urban setting of Sant Hipòlit de Voltregà.


Sant Salvador

Central block of the Sant Salvador Development today (2014). Source: Javi Fune. Photographic holdings of the Museum of the Ter.

In short, this served to create a highly rudimentary type of a company settlement, which was much more disperse and integrated within the urban and social fabric of the surrounding towns. This circumstance was not unique to theGallifa factories, as other late 19th-century industries in Voltreganès also gave rise to similar development processes. This served to reveal the existence of a certain dynamic to the industrialisation process seen in the Voltreganès area, corresponding to the distinctive features of the region and its context. A dynamic and a set of processes that shaped the demographic and urban development of areas clearly defined by the industrialisation of the 19th and 20th centuries, such as Voltreganès.

Fàbrica Gallifa actual

Current appearance of part of the Gallifa factories. Source: Photographic holdings of the Museu del Ter

Download the whole article here.

The presentation made at the International Congress on Worker Settlements and Factory Towns held in October 2018 may be found here:

For further information, the article can be consulted hereLes fàbriques de Gallifa: un cas a mig camí de la fàbrica i la colònia industrial”. by the author Marina Cirera, published in the journal Revista d’ Etnologia de Catalunya.