The Vault, Dundee - Ref: WC0660
This photograph shows The Vault, a curious Dundee back street which ran from High Street behind the Town House to meet St Clement's Lane. The area was demolished when the new City Square complex was built.
The coffee-house is most probably William Nicoll's establishment, listed in the Dundee Directory as No. 16 St Clement's Lane. William Smith, the wine and malt liquor merchant, actually owned Nos. 5, 9 and 11 The Vault.
He was also proprietor of the Queen's Hotel in Nethergate, and lived at Binn Cottage, No. 352 Perth Road. He is listed as the bottler of Edinburgh of Burton ales, and London and Dublin stouts, and as agent for Bass and Co. Ltd. of Burton-on-Trent.
Alexander Wilson who took this photograph, was a supervisor in a Dundee jute mill for over 20 years. He bequeathed much of his collection and £50, to cover the costs involved, to the Free Library Committee of Dundee in 1923.