Font Size

100% 150% 200%

Background Colour

Default Contrast
Close Reset

All our staffed properties, sites and offices, including the HES Archives and Library, are currently closed, but we’re working on plans to gradually reopen. In the meantime, you can access our services online. Find out more.


Cairn (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Torhousekie

Classification Cairn (Period Unassigned)

Canmore ID 62842

Site Number NX35NE 13

NGR NX 3789 5676

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2020.

Toggle Aerial | View on large map

Digital Images

Administrative Areas

  • Council Dumfries And Galloway
  • Parish Wigtown
  • Former Region Dumfries And Galloway
  • Former District Wigtown
  • Former County Wigtownshire

Archaeology Notes

NX35NE 13 3789 5676.

(NX 3789 5676) Earthwork (NR)

OS 6" map (1957)

Indeterminate Structure, Torhouskie. This stands on level ground in a pasture field and is bounded on the E and S by a shallow gully of no defensive value. the remains consist of two concentric dry stone walls, 8' - 9' apart, heavily robbed and turf-covered, enclosing an area 42' in diameter. Apart from a few inner facings which are still in situ in the outer rampart, all the facing stones have either been removed, or are obscured, so that the precise widths of the walls are uncertain. The surviving facings are large boulders and the core of the walls has consisted of small stones tightly packed together without earth. On the E side the crest of the outer wall is 4' above the floor of the gully, and the crest of the inner wall is 2' 6" above that of the outer one. There is no indication of the entrance, and the interior, which is covered with field-gathered stones, shows no structures. In 1911, however, it was suggested that the entrance may possibly have been from the SW, where there was a break in the outer circumference, and against and somewhat within the inner wall to the left of this gap was the suggestion of a small circular hut. The nature and date of this work are impossible to diagnose without excavation.

RCAHMS 1912, visited 1911; TS. 2 June 1955; W M'Ilwraith 1877

Situated on the SE end of a low ridge in undulating ground this structure, much robbed and masked by field clearance stones, is difficult to diagnose. The concentric drystone walling noted by RCAHMS is no longer evident, if it ever existed, and the 'circular hut' is clearly a secondary structure of relatively recent date. The surviving evidence suggests a different interpretation.

The site appears to have consisted of a circular stony platform some 24.0m in diameter and 1.3m in maximum height on the NE where a line of (? revetting) boulders may be seen. Centrally placed within the platform, leaving a berm 3.0m wide, is a circular mound of small 'cairn- type' stones, 18.0m in diameter and averaging 0.8m in height, around

the top of which there is a 'rim' typical of a robbed cairn.

From this it may be inferred that this is a probable robbed bell-cairn (for a well-preserved bell-cairn in the locality see NX46NW 13).

Resurveyed at 1:2500.

Visited by OS (WDJ) 18 August 1970


Field Visit (2 June 1955)

This site was included within the RCAHMS Marginal Land Survey (1950-1962), an unpublished rescue project. Site descriptions, organised by county, are available to view online - see the searchable PDF in 'Digital Items'. These vary from short notes, to lengthy and full descriptions. Contemporary plane-table surveys and inked drawings, where available, can be viewed online in most cases - see 'Digital Images'. The original typecripts, notebooks and drawings can also be viewed in the RCAHMS search room.

Information from RCAHMS (GFG) 19 July 2013.


MyCanmore Image Contributions

Contribute an Image

MyCanmore Text Contributions