Thomas Watson (1821 – 7 March 1887), was an English silk spinner and Liberal politician.
Watson began life as a silk spinner. In 1846 with two fellow workers, he started a silk-spinning and hatter business in Rochdale. He was responsible for the invention of silk-plush for hat-making and became sole partner in the firm of Thomas Watson & Sons, silk-plush manufacturers of Rochdale. He funded a new infrmary for the town of Rochdale, became chairman of Rochdale School Board, and treasurer of the Free Church Denomination. He was also J.P. for Rochdale.