Latest update: 17-October-2019
Modifications to Home Page.

Welcome to the AANHS website

See our Facebook Page for AANHS updates.
Click the Facebook link on this page …

It’s time to join or renew membership for the season ahead. Subscription remains unchanged, the Membership Form is on the “How to Join” page.

Dick Institute


Following the fascinating talk on 10th October you can find more information and detail by clicking on the following link to see/download the above Report:


Our Next Talks:


24th October 2019
Hayley Douglas, Clyde Muirsheil Park

Tag’n’Track Lesser Black Back Gulls

14th November 2019

Graeme Cavers, AOC Archaeology

The Black Loch of Myrton

28th November 2019
Dr. Stephen Harrison, University of Glasgow

Viking Burial Practices in Britain and Ireland.

9th January 2020
Dr. Douglas G. Lockhart, Scottish Local History Forum
Bazaars, Buildings and Benevolence: 1830s to 1930s.


23rd January 2020
John Malden, President, Heraldry Society of Scotland
The Heraldry and State Funeral of Mary Queen of Scots

13th February 2020
Kirsty Archer-Thompson, Abbotsford Trust
“A Delilah of his Imagination”: Sir Walter Scott’s Abbotsford

27th February 2020
Dr. Alison Cathcart, University of Glasgow
‘The reparatioun of the said harborie is most necessaire and expedient for the honnour creditte and benefeit of the whole cuntrey’: Ayr and plantation in Ireland, c.1550-1625

12th March 2020
Dr Stephanie Johnstone
Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels, Ecology and Conservation of Red Squirrels

Our recent publication, available now:
£7.50 (issued free to AANHS members)

Containing: Ayr Jails by Jane Jamieson,
Killwinning Revisited by Margaret H. B. Sanderson
and A Bonnie Lass and the Heroine of a Nation by Petra Baillie
see the Publications For Sale page

Our latest publication, available now:
“Historic Mauchline”, Ochiltree, Catrine and their surroundings: A guide for visitors”         £6


Please look through our pages …

Programme: A first rate series of talks and presentations by experts. Held on a Thursday evening, 7.30, at Ayr Town Hall. See the titles and dates on the Programme Page.
Publications For Sale: 
Monographs in print
and available for purchase.
Publications Online: A wide range of out-of-print articles to download and enjoy at your leisure. Plenty of interesting reading here. Arranged in alphabetical order.
Ayrshire Notes: Over 30 editions of this publication.
Ayr, 750 years:  This page contains “The Royal Burgh of Ayr, volume 2”, full of interest, first published in the 1950s.
Calendar: A broad sweep of our annual events plus the date of the next Committee Meeting.
Links: A wealth of information on linked websites about Ayrshire and its history.
How to Join: If not already a member, we hope you will join to get full benefit from the AANHS, a very well-established and respected society.
Contact: Relevant email addresses.
The Committee

The Society has over 170 members, mainly resident in Ayrshire but there are many members throughout Britain and the world. The membership also includes library and university bodies. The Society is one of the few which publishes regularly. At least one Monograph is usually issued each year, free to members, and on sale to the general public.
Meetings are held during the winter months in the Town Hall, Sandgate, Ayr. Members of the public are freely welcome to attend these meetings to see if they would like to become a member. In the summer months, trips are organised to various places of interest.

 These are some of our online monographs …

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Aims of the Society:  to …

  • promote interest in archaeology, history, natural history with particular reference to Ayrshire
  • encourage the study of these subjects and stimulate research
  • promote the conservation of the heritage of Ayrshire
  • publish regularly material relevant to the Society’s objectives
  • co-operate with appropriate organisations

The Society is affiliated to the following organisations:

  • Ayrshire Federation of Historical Societies
  • Council for Scottish Archaeology
  • British Association for Local History
  • Ayr Arts Guild


Accounts: please click this link

Accounts 2018

History of the Society

The society’s origins go back to 1877. The AANHS was founded in 1947 to promote the study of Ayrshire history and natural history.

For the history of the society prior to the founding of the AANHS see AANHS Collections 1947-1949 Second Series Volume 1.

At the instigation of R W Cochran-Patrick of Woodside, a meeting was held in the County Buildings, Ayr on 19th October 1877 to consider the formation of an Archaeological Society for the counties of Ayr and Wigtown. This was the inception of the Ayrshire and Wigtownshire Archaeological Association. The AWAA published descriptions, illustrated with plans or drawings of various prehistoric and mediaeval remains in the counties of Ayr and Wigtown; printed early charters, manuscripts, historical documents, ecclesiastical, municipal and parochial records and other material relating to the history, antiquities, topography and genealogy of the district. The first volume appeared in 1878. In 1885 the title of the society was changed to the Ayrshire and Galloway Archaeological Association to extend its scope to Kirkcudbright. This Association was wound up in 1897 at the 14th general meeting. In all, the Association published 18 volumes, including 2 at R Vans Agnew’s expense on Sir Patrick Waus.