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Wreath Laying Ceremony at Burns Mausoleum, 1910

Image Rights Holder:
Dumfries & Galloway Museums Service
Project:
:Future Museum
Material:
paper
Dimensions:
width: 207 mm, length: 150 mm
What:
Robert Burns
Subject:
photograph, black and white print
Who:
Alex McDougall (Photographer)
When:
20th Century
Where:
Background:
Dumfries Burns Club “Minute Book of the Burns Club at Dumfries – 17th January 1820 No.1”. Dumfries Museum Collection DUMFM:0198.422: Manuscript copy, on display at Robert Burns House, Dumfries; Gibson, James “The Bibliography of Robert Burns, with Biographical and Bibliographical Notes and Sketches of Burns Clubs, Monuments and Statues”. Kilmarnock: James M’Kie, 1881; 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; 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; 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:

"Dumfries Pays Her Tribute Once More to Scotia's Bard", a monochrome photographic print of dignitaries assembled on 25th January 1910, the date of the poet's birthday.

 

Robert Burns was originally buried in St Michael's Churchyard, Dumfries, in a simple grave, marked only by a plain stone slab. In 1803 when Dorothy and William Wordsworth visited Dumfries they had difficulty in even finding the grave. Burns' admirers came to believe that this was an insufficient memorial to the poet.

 

In 1813 his friend, John Syme formed a committee and launched an appeal to build a mausoleum in his memory. One of the subscribers was the Prince Regent, later George IV. The mausoleum was completed in September 1817.

 

The laying of wreaths at the mausoleum on the poet's birthday was instigated by Dumfries Burns Club. This ceremony was observed throughout the 19th century and formed part of the celebrations of the first and second centenary of his birth. It is still an important element of the rituals of Burns' birthday today.