On October 10, 1898, the Society of Antiquaries in Scotland received word from Mr R Robertson, a Fellow of the Society in Scotland, that a second cist had been found at Cunninghar in Tillicoultry.

A cist is a small ancient coffin or burial chamber, often made from stone or a hollowed tree.

The previous cist had been discovered in the summer of 1894 at the same site.

The area was visited in a few days later and instructions were left for the land steward Mr Niven to remove the soil that covered the large stone lid of the cist.

On Friday, October 21, a group, including Robertson and the Rev R Paul among others, assembled.

Following the removal of around four feet of sand and gravel, two stones were fully exposed – one a smaller squarish stone and the other more boulder-like that covered the cist.

This smaller upper red sandstone slab was around one foot and 7 ½ inches, by one foot and 5 ½ inches.

It rested on the subsoil and overlapped the inner end of the diorite boulder.

This boulder measured three feet and six inches, by two feet and 11 inches, by one foot and two inches.

It lay on top of four sandstone slabs that made up the sides of the cist.

Near the corner of one of these slabs, three smaller stones were placed as if to support the slab.

Following the detailed inspection, and the taking of a couple of photographs, the thin slab was removed then excavation work began.

The soil was removed carefully by hand in the hope that something of significance would be found, but there was nothing there.

The soil around the sides of the cist was then removed and the boulder lifted and cast aside onto the embankment.

Although the cist was well fitted together, again nothing was found in it, not even fragments of teeth.

What they did find on the bottom of the cist some 13 inches deep was dark brown, very brittle and very slim and flat branch like material, but they were not roots as they did not touch the ends or sides of the cist.

Below this was a fine layer of gravel and sand that appeared to have been riddled.

Work then turned to the three small supporting stones. These packing stones were removed, and the group excavated down about 18 inches all round the cist.

Again, nothing was found.

Although disappointed, the men replaced the sand and soil then put the cover-stone back on top of the cist.

What happened to the cist after this is unknown.