The Alexander Wilson Bequest

Wilson Glass Negative

The Local History Centre, Central Library cares for the Alexander Wilson Bequest. This comprises several thousand Victorian Glass negatives of Dundee and the surrounding area.

Alexander Wilson was born in Duns, Berwickshire and moved to Dundee in his twenties to become calender manager in the Baltic Street Calender of Baxter Brothers of Dundee. For over 30 years, he devoted his leisure time to photography.

Many subjects were recorded over the years, however it is evident from the collection that his main interest was architecture. Alexander Wilson recorded the changing face of buildings in Dundee from the 1870’s to 1905. It was fortuitous that he was active at this time, in the years that followed much redevelopment in Dundee resulted in parts of the City vanishing forever.

On his death in 1922 he bequeathed the majority of his 5,000 glass negatives to the Free Library Committee of the Town Council with the sum of £50 to assist with conservation.

The Collection now lives in the Local History Centre, Central Library. The slides have been catalogued and are stored in archival boxes. Prints have been made of the glass negatives and can be viewed.

Customers may order copies of any of the slides in the Bequest. Staff will be able to provide a list of current charges.

The Local History Centre is open:

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday – 9.00 am to 6.00 pm
Wednesday – 10.00 am to 6.00 pm
Saturday – 9.30 am to 5.00 pm

Staff in the Local History Centre may be contacted on:

Tel: 01382 431550
Fax: 01382 431504