Investigations at Amisfield: A Late Medieval Scottish Tower House


The "Debatable Lands" of the Scottish-English border region remained a frontier in a virtual state of war for centuries. Conflicts with England (the Border Wars) were punctuated with feuds among powerful Scottish families for dominance. Landholding families built small fortified towers for security in this hostile environment. Amisfield Tower, one of the best preserved small towers in Scotland, served the Charteris family from at least AD 1400 to 1630. Excavations adjacent to the tower sampled a stratified midden—rich in artifacts and faunal and botanical remains—exceeding two meters deep that provides information on the history of the tower’s construction, and the economic and domestic lives of the tower’s occupants and supporting community. This evidence is accompanied by a rich textual record of Amisfield’s violent history.

Cite this Record

Investigations at Amisfield: A Late Medieval Scottish Tower House. Tom Connolly, Julie M. Schablitsky, Robert S. Neyland, Guy L. Tasa, Vivien J. Singer, Chelsea Rose, Michael P Roller, Bob Ward, John S. Craig, Jaime Dexter. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Seattle, Washington. 2015 ( tDAR id: 433974)


Temporal Keywords
AD 1400-1630

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 228