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Polished stone axes were the oldest archaeological objects found in the West Highland region, and date from the Neolithic period (around 2000BCE). The use of metal axes became widespread soon afterwards, and the museum has examples of these, as well as the heads of the earlier stone axes.

Our collection includes ancient pottery and metalwork, arrowheads and stonework, salvage from the wreck of a Spanish Galleon, and clothing and artefacts from a 1500-year old crannog site. (A crannog was a type of circular loch-dwelling on wooden stilts). Choose an image and click ‘Read more’ for further details.


Gold Armlets

Good Fortune: The story behind these armlets is a particularly inspiring one. “They were found in Kilmallie, just outside Fort William, in 1871 by a crofter who dreamt that if he dug in a particular spot he would find treasure.” They have been identified as a pair of Irish, Late Bronze Age gold penannular armlets. The […]

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Deer On Stone

Celtic Stonework: The museum holds fine examples of Celtic Stonework in its collection. The stone pictured is a large part of a slab of arenaceous mica schist found at Kilmallie churchyard, and most likely dates from the sixteenth century. It is decorated with interlaced foliage, and a weathered impression of a wolf chasing a deer […]

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Spanish Armada Coins

From an Armada galleon: After the death of Mary I in 1558, the famous ‘Bloody Mary’ who had restored England to Roman Catholicism, her husband and co-Monarch, Phillip II of Spain (also a devout Roman Catholic) considered her successor, Queen Elizabeth I, a heretic and an illegitimate ruler.  Using taxes raised with permission from Pope […]

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Hanging Bowl

The Bronze Age: About 2000 BCE new groups arrived in Britain bringing a distinctive style of beautifully decorated pottery and knowledge of metal working. On the west coast of Scotland they seem to have first settled around the Crinan area of Argyll, where copper was locally available and gold was easily obtainable from Ireland. “The […]

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