Sivakasi has a known history of more than 5 centuries. The legend about Sivakasi goes like this. Long back between 1428 and 1460 AD, King Harikesari Parakkirama Pandian ruled the southern region of Tamilnadu, with his capital at Tenkasi. He wanted to construct a temple for Lord Siva in Tenkasi. Therefore he went to Kasi and brought a Sivalingam from there. On his way back with the prized Linga he took rest under a groove of Vilva trees, a few miles past Madurai.
The cow which carried Sivalingam, refused to move from there. He found it hard to reach Tenkasi and to install the Sivalingam on time. So he realised that the wishes of Lord Siva were different from his own. The king reverentially placed the Linga in the place where he had halted and proceeded to Tenkasi. The place which was sanctified by the "Siva linga brought from Kasi", henceforth came to be called Sivakasi.
In 1922 Mr. P.Ayya Nadar and Mr. A.Shanmuga Nadar went to Calcutta and learnt the art of safety matches manufacture. Next year they established the company ‘The South India Lucifer Match Industry’. It was the starting point of the modern industrialized Sivakasi which caters safety matches, fireworks and printing to the whole India.