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Robert Burns House, Dumfries

Image Rights Holder:
Dumfries & Galloway Museums Service
Project:
:Future Museum
Material:
35mm colour transparency
What:
Robert Burns
Subject:
photograph, colour transparency
Who:
When:
20th Century
Where:
Background:
Burns, Robert “The Complete Letters of Robert Burns”, Ed. James A Mackay. Ayr: Alloway Publishing Limited, 1987; Burns, Robert “The Letters of Robert Burns”, 2 vols., Ed. J de Lancey Ferguson and G Ross Roy. Oxford: Clarendon, 1985; Crawford, Robert “The Bard – Robert Burns, a Biography”. London: Jonathan Cape, 2009; Hogg, Patrick Scott “Robert Burns – The Patriot Bard”. Edinburgh: Mainstream, 2008; Lindsay, Maurice “Robert Burns – The Man, his Work, the Legend”. New York and London: Robert Hale and St Martin’s Press, 1979; Lindsay, Maurice “The Burns Encyclopaedia”, 3rd edition. London and New York: Robert Hale and St Martin’s Press, 1980; Lockwood, David “Celebrate the Legend – Discover Robert Burns in Dumfries and Galloway”. Dumfries: Dumfries and Galloway Council, 2009; Mackay, James A “Burns-Lore of Dumfries and Galloway”. Ayr: Alloway Publishing Limited, 1988; Mackay, James “Burnsiana”. Ayr: Alloway Publishing Limited, 1988; Mackay, James “A Biography of Robert Burns”. Edinburgh: Mainstream, 1992; McDowall, William “History of the Burgh of Dumfries, with Notices of Nithsdale, Annandale and the Western Border”, 4th edition. Dumfries: T C Farries and Company Limited, 1986; McIntyre, Ian “Dirt & Deity – A Life of Robert Burns”. London: HarperCollins, 1995; Smith, Graham “Robert Burns the Exciseman”. Ayr: Alloway Publishing, 1989; Town Council of the Royal Burgh of Dumfries (Issued) “Catalogue of Exhibits with Official Handbook of Burns’ House Dumfries and other memories of the National Poet”. Dumfries: Robert Dinwiddie, 1944; Welsh, Alex (Edited) “Handbook of the Dumfries Burns Club”. Dumfries: Robert Dinwiddie, 1955
Description:

This photograph was part of the first group of images of locations associated with Robert Burns to be made specifically for website use. It was taken using a 'conventional' SLR camera (not digital) on 35mm colour transparency film. The film was then sent to a photolab for processing; on its return the frames to be used were selected and these were sent back to the photolab for digitisation. They were written to a Photo CD Portfolio II disk as .pcd files, which was then passed to the Scottish Cultural Resources Access Network for uploading to their website. In all the images moved through the postal system five times.

 

This is an image of Robert Burns House, Dumfries. It was in this ordinary sandstone house in a quiet back street of Dumfries that Robert Burns spent the last three years of his life. The family moved into the house in May 1793. The house had a parlour, kitchen, two bedrooms and even a small study where Burns could write. It was well furnished with a carpet and a long case clock in the parlour.

 

Robert Burns died here on 21 July 1796, although his wife, Jean Armour Burns continued to live in the house until her own death in 1834. The house was purchased in 1851 by their son, Colonel  William Nicol Burns and throughout the 19th Century it became a place of pilgrimage for Burns enthusiasts from around the world.

 

By 1903 a caretaker occupied the house and the room in which the poet had died was set out as an exhibition of Burns relics. The house was restored in 1935 and opened in its entirety as a museum. It is now part of Dumfries and Galloway Museums Service and is enduringly popular with visitors to the town and local people alike.