People's Story

Museum in Old Town

One of the surviving symbols of the Canongate district's former independence is the Canongate Tolbooth. Built in 1591, it served successively as a collection point for tolls (taxes), a council house, a courtroom and a jail. With picturesque turrets and a projecting clock, it's an interesting example of 16th-century architecture. It now houses a fascinating museum called the People's Story, which covers the life, work and pastimes of ordinary Edinburgh folk from the 18th century to today.

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