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Robert Burns

Image taken from Glass Plate Negative of Burns Walk, Dumfries (downstream)

Late 19th Century

A monochrome image of one of Robert Burns' favourite walks along the east bank of the River Nith from Dumfries, looking downstream.


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. He developed the habit of taking walks along the banks of the River Nith, perhaps to replace the outdoor life he had previously led.


In September 1793 he wrote to George Thomson, his publisher, "I walk out, sit down now & then, look out for objects in Nature around me that are in unison or harmony with the cogitations of my fancy & workings of my bosom; humming every now & then the air with the verses I have framed".


The walk upstream along the east bank of the river is known to this day as Burns Walk. It has long been an attraction for those visiting Burns' haunts in and around Dumfries.

glass plate negative
width: 160 mm, length: 120 mm
Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
Accession number:
Glass Plate Negative, DUMFRIES, River Nith / 2
Digital Number:
Creation Date:
c 1900
Dumfries & Galloway Council