Archaeologists investigate remnants of building at site of Scotland's Massacre of Glencoe

By Culture24 Reporter | 16 February 2016

The remains of a building from a mass murder in the Scottish highlands could have been found on the 324th anniversary of the shocking massacre

A photo of a snowy mountain in the Glencoe area of rural Scotland, owned by the Scottish National Trust
The remnants of a building which could have been part of a notorious 17th century massacre could have been discovered in Scotland© NTS
Archaeologists say the mysterious outline of a rectangular building found near a loch site in Scotland could have links to the 17th century Massacre of Glencoe, when 38 members of the MacDonald family were brutally murdered on government orders.

The National Trust for Scotland has been describing a low, earthen bank found in the spectacular highlands setting, where mountains and waterfalls give little indication of the slaughter which took place 324 years ago.

In an act signed off by William III, soldiers who had spent almost two weeks staying with the clan carried out a sudden slaughter on February 13 1692, shocking Scotland in a set of dawn killings.

A photo of a snowy mountain in the Glencoe area of rural Scotland, owned by the Scottish National Trust
The remnants of a building which could have been part of a notorious 17th century massacre could have been discovered in Scotland© NTS
Derek Alexander, the Head of Archaeology for the trust, says the potential turf house at Achtriochtan, near the loch, was spotted during a routine inspection.

“We were very excited to discover these remains,” he adds.

“Most of the archaeological sites in the glen are stone-built structures, likely to date to after the agricultural changes of the mid-18th or 19th century.

“Prior to then, most buildings would have been built of turf, perhaps with one or two stones included in the base of the wall.

“It is impossible to provide a precise date for the Achtriochtan structure from their surface remains alone but by carrying out a detailed drawing of the site and undertaking a comprehensive photographic record we will provide a basis for any future research.”

The charity has owned the site, which is popular with trekkers and nature lovers, since the 1930s.

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Three museums to discover the archaeology of Scotland in

Stewartry Museum, Dumfries
Thanks to years of collecting and to the hard work of local metal detectorists The Stewartry Museum holds an amazing collection of archaeology from the local area. Redisplayed, these ancient and important pieces will be given new life through highlighted displays and enlarged images in the current exhibition, Close Encounters with Tiny Treasures. Until March 21 2018.

Museum of Edinburgh
Roman and Dark Age Cramond is a celebration of 60 years of archaeological research at Cramond, exploring the Roman occupation and Dark Age bodies from the Bathhouse and the forensic science behind Isotopic, DNA, forensic analysis and reconstruction. Until April 30 2016.

The Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery, Glasgow
Built around AD 142 in the reign of the Roman emperor Antoninus Pius, the Antonine Wall ran coast-to-coast across Scotland from the Clyde to the Firth of Forth. The permanent gallery at the Hunterian Museum showcases the collection of spectacular monumental sculpture and other Roman artefacts recovered from the Wall, including richly sculptured distance slabs unique to the frontiers of the Roman Empire.
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