44 Bath Street, Glasgow.
The Kimberley Bar. 1889.
The Kimberley Bar was formerly known as the Tivoli Bar. The owner Mr James McMillan ran a strict business selling good quality wines, spirits and beer. The oblong saloon which formed the interior was spotless, the bar counter ran all the way to one side with a curve at each end. The gantry was stocked full with wines, brandies and numerous rare liquors well displayed. A small keg was at hand selling “McMillan’s Special” blend of old Scotch whisky. Outside and immediately in front of the bar, was an immense floor space, with grand looking tables and veneer seated stools, facing the bar and extending the whole length of the saloon were long cushioned seats with neat iron tables in front. Heading down the two comfortable sitting rooms at the extreme end of the premises. The lavatory was conveniently mirrored with grand tiles on the walls and floor.
The interior was decorated with pictures and engravings, prominent amongst them was the Kimberley and others of the famous diamond fields bearing the name. Mr McMillan spent many years of his life digging for diamonds, he spent a great time telling stories of his experiences mining in the camps at Kimberley. He left Cape-town in 1879 on a bullock wagon with his face towards the diamond fields and travelled 900 miles roughing it to come home to Scotland. The small party in which he belonged to jogged along with their train of 18 bullocks, they pitched tents under the wagons.
Mr McMillan was one of the fortunate ones of having some money in his pocket as thousands of men, women and children mined for diamonds and never made any money. When he returned to Glasgow he took over the old Tivoli Bar and had interests in the Victoria Hotel in Gourock, a hostelry well looked after by his brother William.