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All archaeological objects found, with no known owner are the property of the State. Report your find, or a potential find, to Carlow County Museum, the National Museum of Ireland or your local Garda Station. If you find, or believe you found, and archaeological object, report it within 96 hours (4 days) to Carlow County Museum; the National Museum of Ireland or your local Garda Station.

Reporting the object and cooperating with the above agencies may see the finder being paid a Finders Reward for good citizenship. These archaeological objects are normally then displayed in Carlow County Museum for everyone’s enjoyment and add to our knowledge of the history of County Carlow.

Owing to our rich and varied past this country has many objects that help to tell that story and evoke a sense of place, nostalgia and pride. Any of these objects that are archaeological in nature fall under the National Monuments Act 1930 and amendments up to 2004. In essence these Acts state that all archaeological objects found, with no known owner are the property of the State. The National Museum of Ireland and the National Monuments Service are, in the main, the Government sections that deal with this on a countrywide basis.

Under those National Monuments Acts and the National Cultural Institutions Act 1997, the Director of the National Museum of Ireland has Designated Carlow County Museum as a repository for archaeological finds from County Carlow. Under the same legislation Dermot Mulligan, Museum Curator, Carlow County Museum, is the Designated person for County Carlow. The Museum has this Designation since 2003.

Please download the brochure below for more information about ‘Designated Museums in Ireland’: –

Downloadable Resources

A Flint Leaf-Shaped Arrowhead from Ballintemple, Ardattin, Co. Carlow. This arrowhead pre-form serves as a fine example of the technical and aesthetic expertise of stone craftmanship in the Early Neolithic period (c.4,000BC). The flint used in this arrowhead probably came from beach deposits on the eastern seaboard or from Co. Antrim.

The use of metal detectors at or near archaeological sites is also regulated by the National Monuments Acts 1930 – 2004. Unless you have made an application and received consent under the above Acts it is against the law to be in possession of a detection device in or near a site protected under the above Acts. It is also against the law to possess a detection device for the purpose of searching for archaeological objects or ‘treasure’. Under the National Monument Acts 1930 – 2004 there are provisions for a fine and imprisonment if found guilty of this offence. If you find an archaeological object while in contravention of these restrictions with a detection device additional offenses under the Acts may have been committed.

The National Museum of Ireland Advice on Metal Detecting: The Law on Metal Detecting in Ireland | National Museum of Ireland

National Monuments Service information on Sites Monuments Records (known archaeological sites): Archaeological Survey of Ireland | National Monuments Service (

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