Robert Burns

Robert Burns (1759–1796) is one of two Scottish authors memorialized at the southern end of the Mall, in the section known as “Literary Walk” because of the numerous statues of writers.

After successfully placing Scottish writer Sir Walter Scott in the Park, Scottish Americans started a second campaign for a monument to another cultural icon, Robert Burns, the poet who wrote “Auld Lang Syne” as well as numerous other poems in Scottish dialect. The Burns memorial committee commissioned Scottish sculptor John Steell to create an original figure of Burns equal in size and style to the one he created of Scott. Burns was installed across from Scott on the southern end of the Mall, and the sculpture was unveiled in October 1880. The Burns and Scott monuments were among several monuments that were proposed and donated by groups of European immigrants who sought to see themselves represented in the City’s premier public space, to signal their inclusion in American life.

The poets Robert Burns and Sir Walter Scott face each other, as statues, from either side of the path of the Mall.

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