Ingersoll & Burns


Second only to Shakespeare, Ingersoll admired the Scottish poet Robert Burns. During the summer of 1878, Ingersoll was able to visit the Burns cottage in Scotland, which is also open as a museum.

There, he improvised a poem in memory of Burns, which was written out and posted for public view. In the Robert Burns museum, the only lines of poetry idsplayed which were not composed by Burns himself are those of Ingersoll.

"Scotland and the world have Robert Burns; America and the world need Robert Ingersoll," declared Scottish humanist activist Jim McCurdie, donor of the poem photograph, visiting this museum in the summer of 1999.