Dumfries Museums

Loans Service
Loans are available to schools and community groups. Telephone Dumfries Museum: (01387) 253374 between 9am-1pm and 2pm-5pm, Monday to Friday,
Or E mail,Dumfries Museum at:dumfriesmuseum@dumgal.gov.uk and ask if the item you require is available. If it is we will reserve it for a week. If it is not, please call again in a couple of weeks when the current user should have returned it. You may collect it any time during museum opening hours, which are 10am-1pm, 2pm-5pm Monday to Saturday, and 2pm-5pm Sunday (closed Sunday and Monday between October and March). Items can be borrowed for a period of up to three weeks, after which you must return them to Dumfries Museum for checking.

~ Boxed Collections ~
Geology: Rocks:
Iron nodule sandstone, red sandstone, loadcast sandstone, flint, breccia, diorite, porphyritic basalt, vesicular basalt with amygdaloids, granites, mica schist, gneiss, slate, marble.
books and photocopies

Geology: Minerals:
Mica, geode, haematite, graphite, amethyst, stibnite, calcite, feldspar, sphalerite, gypsum, pyrites, sulphur, galena, augite, stalactite. Books and photocopies

Geology: Fossils:
Graptolites, trilobite, brachiopods, bivalves, gastropod, sharks teeth, coral, criniods, ferns, ammonite, echinoid, petrified tree. Books and photocopies

Natural History: Bones & Skulls:
Sheep skull and horns, deer skull and antlers, horse lower jaw, whale vertebrae, elephant cheek tooth (relative to elephant).

Natural History: Human Bones:
Upper portion of human skull; pelvic fragment and joint; leg bone.

Pre-History 1:
Flint nodules, scrapers and flakes, flint axe-head rough-out, flint hand axe, polished stone axe-heads, pottery sherds, copper alloy axe- head, oyster shells, worked obsidian arrowhead, Maori polished stone axe- head. Books and photocopies.

Pre-History 2:
Flint nodules, scrapers and flakes, flint axe-head rough-out, polished stone axe-head, pottery sherds, flint arrow-head, microliths, oyster shells. Books and photocopies.

The Romans 1:
Oil lamps,reproduction coins, mosaic fragment, glass, lead sling stone, perfume bottles, Samian ware, mortaria sherds, amphora sherd, books, photocopies, pictures and map relating to Hadrian's Wall.

The Romans 2:
Oil lamps, reproduction coins, glass, mortarium sherd, wine jar sherd, figurine, lead slingstone, perfume bottle, nail, Samian ware, mosaic fragment, books, photocopies, pictures and map relating to Hadrians Wall.

Robert Burns 1&2
18th century artefacts: horn spoon, candle mould, knife and fork, parchment document, inkwell, replica objects: glazed bowl and plate, wooden bowl, pewter plate, horn spoon, pewter candlestick, rushlight holder, candle snuffer, fire mark plate, bust of Burns, Great Seal of George III, sealing wax sticks, clay pipes, seals, demonstration materials: period costume for boy & girl, books, photocopies, reproduction maps, photographs, leaflets.

Domestic Life 1
Griddle, knitting needles, kettle, cauldron, rope winder, knitting sheath, potato masher, egg spoon, horn spoon, butter pats, wooden water pipe section, washboard, books and photocopies.

Domestic Life 2
Wooden bowl, candle mount, blood stick, yoke, clay pipe, butter stamp, knitting sheath, horn ladle, wooden spoon, toddy ladle, cruzie, box iron and slug, washboard, books and photocopies.

Candle mould, stoneware jar, carpet bowl, candle snuffer and wick trimmer, wooden money box, pestle, goffering iron, box iron, ceramic hot water bottle, memorial cards, Christmas cards, valentine cards, scraps, books and photocopies.

Education & Childhood
Alphabet board, slates, book protector, china inkwell, pumice shaker, school straps, child's clogs, sampler, ginger beer bottle, rag doll, curling tongs, photographs showing local schools and children, collection of school books.

Granite chips, granite sett or paving stone (Craignair Quarry, Dalbeattie), sandstone blocks with mason's mark, worked fragment of local sandstone, 4 mason's tools, books and photocopies.

Britain at War 1
Documents and ephemera relating to both world wars, ration books, photocopies, replica postcards, photographs relating to Norwegian Army in Dumfries, replica posters, gas mask, powdered egg can, document pack, books and photocopies.

Britain at War 2
Documents and ephemera relating to both world wars, ration books, photocopies, replica postcards, photographs relating to the Norwegian Army in Dumfries, replica posters, child's gas mask, "relics" of the Battle of Britain, document pack, books and photocopies.

Sight & touch
Jacob's sheep fleece, balls of wool, knitted squares, teazles, ostrich egg, ostrich feathers, polished minerals, polished axe-head, obsidian axe-head, beachcombing objects, shells, glass, stones.

~ Mounted Animals~

Badger (in perspex case)
Seagull (not cased)
Fox (not cased)
Otter (not cased but with perspex cover)
Weasel (in perspex)


Dumfries and Galloway Council
Community and Customer Services
Museums Forward Plan
2010 - 2015

If you wish to view
Click here

Dumfries Museum had its first school visit on 4th August 1836 when a party of boys from Dr Burnside's Academy visited the Observatory. Over the years since then, the range of services to schools has developed, offering valuable learning experiences across the curriculum.

Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
Old Bridge House Museum
Robert Burns Center
Burns House
Sanquhar Tolbooth Museum

Class visits should be booked in advance if at all possible, by telephoning Dumfries Museum - (01387) 253374. This avoids overcrowding in the galleries and allows access to facilities such as the Camera Obscura which have a limit on the number that can be accommodated. We can generally handle groups of up to 50.

Admission to museums is FREE, but there is a charge for the audio-visual presentations at the Robert Burns Centre, where a discount of 20% is offered to groups of 15 or more. The Camera Obscura at Dumfries Museum is offered FREE to school classes from Dumfries and Galloway if an advance booking is made. A visit will be greatly enhanced if some preparatory work is done in class beforehand. Museum staff are pleased to assist class teachers in planning a museum visit.

Resource materials can be provided and it may be possible to make objects from the collection available. The museum is delighted to receive follow-up work from pupils and will often exhibit this in the galleries. Due to the number of school classes visiting the museum it is not possible for museum staff to give guided tours on specific topics. We have prepared a number of activity sheets which can help to structure a visit.

Dumfries Museum (This covers all exhibition areas and individual sections can be selected)
The Romans
Early People
Burns House
The Tree Trail
Birds and Beasts
The Dark Ages Trail
The Treasure Trail
These can be copied or adapted, and we can provide clipboards and pencils to use during your visit.

Museum staff are happy to collaborate with class teachers on projects. We can help by suggesting references to sources, and providing photocopies from original documents, scarce books, photographs and maps. Copies can be obtained of most of the exhibition texts.

There is a range of over 90 leaflets on local subjects which we provide free to class teachers. There are boxed collections of objects which are available for use in the classroom. We also have a wide variety of videos, tapes and games with museum connections which can be borrowed. See above for more details.
Bookings and enquiries should be directed to:
Dumfries Museum, The Observatory, Dumfries DG2 7SW.
Tel:(01387) 253374 or E mail, Fiona Wilson at:Fiona.Wilson@dumgal.gov.uk

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