Highland Folk Museum - An attraction for all ages
I.F. Grant - Collection Information - Gallery

Our Collections

Our Collections

The Highland Folk Museum collections mainly reflect the social and rural life of the Scottish Highlands. The museum is now based in Newtonmore where are core collections are stored in our new purpose built facility. Our collection of buildings are displayed and interpreted throughout the site at Newtonmore for visitors to enjoy (April - Oct).

Agricultural Collection

This is one of the strongest elements in the collections, especially with regard to subsistence farming and small-scale agriculture. In all, it amounts to several thousand items. Recent acquisitions concentrate on the introduction of mechanised farming, with examples of horse-powered machinery and implements being collected.

Domestic Collection

This is the most important collection, of international importance and numbering some two thousand objects. The collections range from cooking material through heating, lighting and laundry to a major holding of traditional house fittings and furniture.

Crafts, Trades and Industries

Most of the traditional crafts such as mason, joiner, shoemaker, wheelwright and smith are covered in this collection. There are also smaller collections on shops and markets. It encompasses traditional industries such as textiles, forestry, whisky making and fishing.


The Museum is actively collecting buildings representative of different aspects of Highland vernacular architecture. These are mainly ones in danger of being lost through demolition. As artefacts in their own right they include a smoke house, school, church, clockmaker's workshop, croft house, post office, railway halt and joiner's shop.

Applied Arts

The Museum has a small but nationally significant collection of material made by cairds, or travelling people, including silver, jewellery and horn work.

The ceramic collection was largely collected in terms of use in domestic contexts. The exception is that the Barvas ware in the collection is of national importance.

Textiles and Costume

The Museum has a very significant collection of Highland flat textiles including tartan pieces and traditional hand woven blankets. It has some important examples of locally produced linen.

The costume collection includes much fashionable female costume from the early 19th century to the Edwardian period including fine examples of the use of tartan in the 19th century Highland society.

Sports and Pastimes

In the area of sport, the strongest collection is that of curling stones.

The Museum is also a repository for shinty artefacts and memorabilia, designated by the Camanachd Association. There is a small collection of golf clubs and other late 19th century artefacts relating to the game in the Highlands.

The museum has a collection of material relating to game shooting including some important sporting guns.

Archives and Photographs

Much of the archive material relates to the history of the Museum, including the private papers of the founder, I F Grant. There is a small collection of trade journals, tradesmen's daybooks and papers belonging to local societies.

The Museum has a small collection of photographs as well as postcards relating to the early 20th century Highlands.