People's Story Museum, Edinburgh

People's Story Museum, Edinburgh

Learning about Scotland’s royalty and nobility is all very interesting, but sometimes you may wonder – what about the commoners, how did they live? The answer can be found at the People’s Story Museum.

Housed in Canongate Tolbooth, built in 1591 and once a customs house and jail, this museum tells the history of Edinburgh, as seen through the eyes of those who lived and worked here, from the 18th century to the present.

A written and oral presentation, backed up with photographs, drawings and artefacts, will take you through the day-to-day lives of regular folk, both at work and at home. You will visit beautifully recreated replicas of a bookbinder’s shop, a pub, a prison cell, a tea-room and a war-time kitchen, all filled with copies of the original objects once used by ordinary people.

In the Edinburgh Life section you will see how communities helped each other; how they protested against injustice and the meetings and rallies they held. Working in Edinburgh showcases how books, beer and cakes were made in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The Leith Collection focuses on work in the shipyards, how ships were built, repaired and unloaded in the docks. The Newhaven Collection covers working and day-to-day life in a small fishing community, while At Home in Edinburgh displays household items, such as furniture, crockery, cutlery, domestic appliances, record players and toys.

This fascinating museum is very much kids-friendly too, as it offers a glimpse into life without mobile phones or MP4 players! The museum shop sells books and gift items related to the objects on display.

Opening Hours: daily 10:00 – 17:00

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of Edinburgh, Scotland within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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People's Story Museum on Map

Sight Name: People's Story Museum
Sight Location: Edinburgh, Scotland
Sight Type: Museum/Gallery
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

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