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Generally an agricultural area, industry came with the canal and the Industrial Revolution. The town hosted a number of mills none of which now operate in their original form. There is still industry in the town, some in old mill buildings and some in a new industrial estate between the town and the river.
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Map of Silsden with its 9 textile mills ().
Towns with historical textile mills near Silsden.
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Yorkshire textile mills, 2010-17. About this site.