We are pleased & honoured to announce the advent of the Knox Anderson archive to our site. Tom Anderson, under whose aegis this collection is managed, spent many years both living and working as a shop keeper on Dunbar's once busy thoroughfare and to say he is an authority on the subject is an understatement. It is fitting his first "feature" is the High Street through the 20th century.

We also have items covering:- 

  • Tourism (x2)
  • Postcard themes 
    • The Barracks
    • Monuments & Churches
    • Hotels & Lodgings
  • A section on The "Discovery" of John Muir.

The small grocery and sweet shop owned by J & M Scott in the East Port. The steps access the Mechanics room.

Stark’s Garage, now demolished, but the shop at the side, No19 is now the present Post Office.

Louis Allen, Household and China, Toys Etc. 21 High St.                                                         Photo A1HistoryDunbar

The Main’s café at No.35 with Peter Heatly, Gents clothier, next

Borthwick’s Fruit and vegetable shop at No. 43. Next door to Spence the Clothier at No.47

The High St. showing D. Smith ,Clothier, J. Malcolm, Grocer and Spence, Draper.

St. George Hotel Built 1628 Renovated 1828 The premier coaching inn of the Burgh. Now converted into flat.

The grocers shop at 72 High Street before A. T. Smith.

Lipton’s grocery store at the corner of Silver and High streets. Aitchison the fishmonger next door.

The town house with the Police station on the right. Kinnach the watchmaker on the left and part of Main the saddler’s shop.

A side view of Fraser the grocer at No. 77 also Craig the fish merchant.

Wilson's Temperance Hotel at 95 High St. occupied the site where the Bank of Scotland now stands. The next door flats, now demolished, have boards up advertising a business run from each house. The lower one is for A.W. Anderson, Watchmaker.

Wilson’s hotel was replaced by Craig’s building which in turn is now occupied by the Bank of Scotland. No.96

The British Linen Bank on the right, now the Bank of Scotland. No.95.

G. Grahame 97-99 High St. A large shop selling a big and varied selection of goods.

Now the Royal Bank of Scotland 105 High St.                                                                     Photo.  A1HistoryDunbar

The Co-op Drapery and Household Dept. 109 High St.                                                          Photo A1HistoryDunbar

Gibb the baker who became provost and after his death a room at the library was dedicated to him. The shop is decorated to celebrate the Coronation of King Edward VI

Carr's Shoe shop at 117, Law’s Hairdresser 119, and Winter's Grocery at 121 High St.    Photo. A1HistoryDunbar

Thompson Newsagent at 125, The Lido Café 131 and Robertson the Ironmonger at 135 High St.  
                                                                                                                                          Photo. A1HistoryDunbar

The new block at 121 High Street, Newsagent Thompson, Grocer Winter and Hairdresser Law with Togneri’s ice cream Café, the Lido at No.131.

Shop at 121 High Street

High St. view showing Samuel & Winter, grocers, J. Cowan, dairy, Dicksons, Household goods and Grays, painters.

Danish Dairy Co. at No. 137.

From right to left Robertson the ironmonger, the Kilt shop, the Restrooms containing toilets and the town library, then down to Dickson’s Home Stores.

The lower end of the High Street before restoration and rebuilding.

Folkarde’s Grocery shop at the corner of High and Victoria Streets.

Crossing the street to the Co-op butcher with the tearoom upstairs, the grocery shop was to the left of the picture. No. 140 High. St

Early photograph of the Lorne Hotel No.134 and the shop occupied by the Buttercup Dairy No.138 on the right.

The Lorne Hotel showing Smith, the baker’s shop and Mackay’s sweet shop at Street level. Nos. 130, 132 and 134

Early photograph of the site of the Muir shop. The shop front went through many variations. No.126.

A later view of the Muir grocery used as a gift shop. At left No.124. Grocer shop, Coopers.

112 High St.

Looking towards the West Port showing Melville's shop at 116 high street, Kepting, Watchmaker 108, Stewart, Draper 104, McNab, Dyers 100 and Malcolm, Grocers at 98.

Purves drapery shop at the corner of West Port. One of the earliest photographs of a Dunbar shop. These premises were demolished and replaced. See next picture.

The new building at 96 High Street owned and occupied by brothers Alec. and John Tait, Butchers

Wood, the grocers at 92 High Street, later Purves took over. J. Ramsay, Boot and Shoemaker at No. 88

Mr Nelson farmed at Newhouse and sold his produce in the Greengrocers fruit and sweet shop. 76 High St.

This popular inn was run by Brothers Ollie and Willie Pott after the death of their father John. 72 High St.

George Graham, the baker, is shown outside his shop at 66 High street. He was T.B.Knox’s son-in-law. The building is decorated for King George V jubilee celebrations.

T.B Knox took over the business from his father James who had taken over the business from his brother David. David Knox brought a Printing press from Duns in 1849.

A view of the Knox shop in the 1930s when it was run by T.B.Knox’s daughter Elizabeth Anderson. Bunty Mason, shop assistant, in doorway.

Jackson the draper in the doorway of his shop at 60
High Street. The other gentleman is Mr Moody.

Downie’s shop at 56 High street. One of two printers in Dunbar at the same time, the other being T.B.Knox.

Corner of the Post Office at Abbeylands, the doorway was on the High Street frontage.

A poor quality photograph showing Kirkwoods garage at Abbeylands.

Caledonian Playhouse cinema in Abbey Road with Birrell Confectioners and a photo shop later Shiell’s Shoe shop.

9 West Port.

A. Clark’s shop in the West Port making and repairing boots and shoes. No information known about the shop, with saloons, next door.

G. Cunningham was a large building firm who built many of the red sandstone houses in Dunbar. His office was at Bayswell Rd.

Macfarlane’s fish and chip shop at the corner of Castle Street and Victoria Street.

General store at the end of Cats Row owned by Mr Reilly.

George Grahame’s branch shop on right of his residence, Cromwell House, at the Old Harbour.

Post war photographs from the Knox Anderson Archive 5 High St.

Solicitors office No. 15

Dental Practice No. 17

Clothes shop No. 19 now the Post Office.

Pharmacy at No. 25, Rasul Bros. at 21 High St.

31 High St.

Dunbar News 31a High St.

D. and M. Hobbies at 33a High. St.

Country Café at 35 High St.

Dunfermline Building Society and Solicitors.

Victoria Wine at 47 and Greengrocer at 41 High St.

James Armet No.49 High St.

Azad Video at 51 High St.

Established by D. Smith who became a provost of the burgh. 53 High St.

TSB at 59 High St.

Sue Ryder shop at No. 61.

A branch of Smith the Baker, 65 High St.

67 High St.

Also 67 High St.

St. George Hotel now flats.

Haldane’s Shoe shop at 71 High St.

Grocer's shop at No. 77 Liptons, then Galbraith,

No. 77 now Ladbrokes.

Bank of Scotland at Nos. 95 and 91.

Lothian Printers at 109, Cromwell Antiques at 113 High St.

J. Law Hairdresser at 119, Umberto’s 121 High St.

123 High St.

135 High St.

137 High St.

143-147 High St

Castle Hotel  163-165  and M & I Video rentals 159 H. St

146 High St.

144 High St.

 Coastline Casuals 138 and Co-op 140 High St

Locksmith at 134 High St.

William Smith, Baker. No.130.

Photo Studio, Now John Muir Birthplace Trust

The Food Hamper No. 124

106 high St, & 107.

Spar convenience store at 88 High St.

Mason’s Shoe Shop at 80 High St.

Bits & Bobs Baby Clothes, 76 High St

Fishmonger, 70 High St. 

D & A Sportswear shop at 66 High St

Knox the Newsagent at 64 High St.

Downies Bookshop, 56 High St.

Lothian Hotel, 54 High St.

38 High St.

Abbeylands, High St.

Dental Mechanic, 10 High St.

8 High St.

6 High St.

4 High St.

3 West Port.

Taylor, Wool Etc. 5 West Port.

Main the Saddler, 9 West Port.

Miller the Butcher, 21 West Port.

The Pet Shop at 18 West Port with the Clinic next door at No. 20

The Hairdressers at 16, the Present Co. at 14 and 12 West Port, next door, empty.

Kandies, the sweet shop at 10 West Port

Togneri’s Fish & Chip Shop & Café at  6 & 8 West Port

Greengrocer at  4 West  Port

Captain’s Cabin Gift Shop in former Barracks Guard House.
Shops of the 20th Century   THE END
Some tourist information and accommodation
Some postcards from the Knox Anderson collection
Monuments and Churches
The Barracks
Hotels and Lodgings in Dunbar
Some more tourist information

Moderators' Conversations

Whilst it our earnest endeavour to ensure data which we report & promulgate - some might say plagiarise - online is accurate we appreciate that recorded history is not the preserve of the vanquished it is indeed quite the opposite. However if there are alternative versions we try and include them so the viewer can make a balanced judgement.

Originally, last March, we had no interest of covering any items of modern social history until 2012 at the  earliest. Nevertheless recently a number of issues have arisen and we felt obliged to add our ha'pworth as there is no point in essaying to be scrupulously fair on matters of the past if those of the present (the past 50 years) have been recorded fashioned and re-written merely to suit certain pseudo-commentators agendas. With this in mind, in some areas we have been more active than was first envisaged.

It is evident that we have neglected to mention Dunbar's Wilderness man feeling that the father of conservation has more than enough champions, branders and re-branders without our comptrollers entering the fray. It leaves us to "cover" the nearly men and women viz. The likes of Mrs Miller Mitchell (our poetess), Messrs Dunbar, Gall, Mennon (his Dunbar years) - our poets. Hume, Rankin, Runciman, Turnbull, Wilson and Wingate, Dunbar's most eminent adopted son (for the second half of his life).

Back to possibly Dunbar's most famous son, John Muir. The Burgh files (B18) at the Scottish Record Office could be interrogated more so that his birthplace and other facts could be described more accurately.

Before the bandwagon or should one say juggernaut, gathers more momentum on the Twinning front, it's over to Tom Anderson into whose archive we're intruding, to provide his documentary evidence of a record of events as they really happened.

                                              The Martinez Connection

We are publishing a small selection of documents to show that one of the first contacts with the trustees of the Muir home in Martinez took place in 1960 long before the date in talks and publications circulating at present. We feel that attention should be drawn to these facts to make sure future researchers, historians and students are not misled.

Mrs Harriett Kelly, Secretary/Treasurer of the Trustees visited Dunbar in the summer of 1960. She visited the information room looking for any local information held about John Muir, unfortunately, they had no knowledge of him. They suggested a meet with Mr Tom Anderson at Knox’s shop. She met and introduced herself to Mr Anderson hoping to get some information on John Muir and his family and to take or get pictures of the town. She gave Mr Anderson details of Muir and the hope they would get his home in Martinez preserved and opened for public viewing. He offered to help with the provision of some pictures of old Dunbar.

Following her visit she sent the book, published to raise funds for the trustees, to him. Picture No. 1 shows the front cover of the book written by John Winkley and picture 2 lists the trustees of the Historical park Association. This book was loaned to various persons who showed an interest, including the Rev. McMartin, who had a keen interest in local history. Letter No. 1 is one of the first contacts between Martinez and Dunbar in the post war years. Mr Anderson then sent an old etching of Dunbar which was received with pleasure by Mrs Harriet Kelly. Letters No. 2 and 3. Later more photographs and transparencies were sent.

The last two pictures show a first day cover with the John Muir stamp posted April 29th 1964 sent to Mr. Anderson, one of a set of six, and a postcard  posted December 24th, 1964, 50 years after his death.

Over the years a correspondence was kept up. Mrs. Kelly again visited Dunbar in the summer of 1969 during a European tour, staying at the Craig-en-Gelt hotel. She visited Mr Anderson when she entertained his family with a slide presentation showing the progress they had made in establishing John Muir Home, Martinez Letter No.4 shows an excerpt from her 1969 Christmas letter which mentions this visit.   This was the visit when she contacted Mr. Brown, the town clerk, when a more formal exchange of information was established. Soon the opportunities became apparent to the officials and politicians of East Lothian and the John Muir industry was established.