The County Antrim village of Bushmills has a long and illustrious history of whiskey production. In 1608, the first licence to distil whiskey was granted by King James I for the region which is now County Antrim. The Irish spirit soon became a favourite among the revellers of British King James's court. In 1784, the Bushmills distillery became an officially registered company. From the 1740s to 1910 Irish emigrants to the USA spread their taste for Bushmills overseas. During these years the Bushmills whiskeys scored outstanding successes at international spirit and whiskey competitions.