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Drawing of Patrick Miller's Steamboat on Dalswinton Loch

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Patrick Miller's steamboat on Dalswinton Loch c 1788

Introduction:
Robert Burns took on the lease of Ellisland Farm from Patrick Miller of Dalswinton from Whitsunday 1788 for a rent of ¶œ50 per year. It was a small unimproved holding of 170 acres situated on the bank of the River Nith about 5 miles north of the town of Dumfries. Miller gave Burns ¶œ300 with which to build a farmhouse and enclose the fields.
Image Rights Holder:
Dumfries & Galloway Museums Service
Ref:
117
Project:
241:Robert Burns - People and Places
Material:
Paper
Dimensions:
Image - length: 193 mm, width: 270 mm
What:
Drawing of Patrick Miller's Steamboat on Dalswinton Loch
Subject:
William Coston Aitken (1816 = 1875) was born, educated and married in Dumfries before moving to Birmingham around 1850. He sketched places in and around Dumfries from a young age and his work is a record of the built environment of the town and the landmarks of the surrounding countryside in the first part of the 19th century.
Who:
Robert Burns (1759-1796) (he visited here)
William Symington (1763-1831) (engineer of steam navigation)
Alexander Nasmyth (1758-1840) (artist (after))
William Coston Aitken (1816-1875) (artist)
Patrick Miller (Dalswinton)(1731-1815) (friend of Burns)
When:
c 1835 - 1845
Where:
Dumfries Museum, Dumfries & Galloway
Background:
William Coston Aitken (1816 = 1875) was born, educated and married in Dumfries before moving to Birmingham around 1850. He sketched places in and around Dumfries from a young age and his work is a record of the built environment of the town and the landmarks of the surrounding countryside in the first part of the 19th century.
Description:
Miller had been a sailor and had an interest in all things to do with navigation. This drawing shows the early prototype of a steam boat which he developed with William Symington being tested on the loch on his estate at Dalswinton. Perhaps Robert Burns observed these trials or even went on board!