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Print entitled 'Dumfries Bridge', c 1790

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'Dumfries Bridge', a copper plate engraving, 1790

Introduction:
When Robert Burns exchanged the role of farmer for that of Exciseman he moved with his family from Ellisland Farm into a tenement flat in Bank Street, Dumfries, close to the Whitesands and the River Nith. The family lived here from 1791 until 1793 when they moved to a better quality house in Mill Street (now Burns Street).
Image Rights Holder:
Dumfries & Galloway Museums Service
Ref:
137
Project:
241:Robert Burns - People and Places
Material:
Paper
Dimensions:
Image - length: 120 mm, width: 171 mm
What:
Print entitled 'Dumfries Bridge', c 1790
Subject:
This copper plate engraving was printed by S Hooper of London and published in Captain Francis Grose's two volume, 'Antiquities of Scotland'. Robert Burns and Francis Grose met and became friends whilst Grose was researching his book. Burns wrote the poem, 'Tam O'Shanter' as a 'witch story' to accompany the engraving of Alloway Kirk which was published in it.
Who:
S Hooper (212 High Holborn, London) (publisher)
Lady Devorgilla (built original bridge)
J N (engraver)
Captain Francis Grose (1731?-1791) (author)
Robert Burns (1759-1796) (his home)
When:
15 April 1789 (book published)
1747 (original drawing)
17 March 1790 (print published)
Where:
Dumfries Museum, Dumfries & Galloway
Background:
This copper plate engraving was printed by S Hooper of London and published in Captain Francis Grose's two volume, 'Antiquities of Scotland'. Robert Burns and Francis Grose met and became friends whilst Grose was researching his book. Burns wrote the poem, 'Tam O'Shanter' as a 'witch story' to accompany the engraving of Alloway Kirk which was published in it.
Description:
Dumfries at that time was a lively town of some 5,600 inhabitants, mostly living tightly packed into tenement closes of red sandstone. The town was a busy port and in 1792 Burns was promoted to the Dumfries Port Division of the Excise.