There have been a number of excavations here since the remnants of the Chieftain’s House were discovered in 1981.
1983 - 1989
Between 1983 and 1989 a major joint Nordic excavation project was carried out on Borghøyden heights. It became clear that a chieftain’s seat from the early Iron Age had been found there, and that a number of buildings dating back to various different periods had stood there on the heights. The main excavation site, Borg I (the Chieftain’s House) and Borg II (buildings from the 1000s), were almost completely excavated. A corner of the Chieftain’s House was preserved unexplored for later research projects. The size of the buildings and their room layouts were established.
The functions of the rooms were analysed on the basis of where the various types of objects and materials were found. The archaeologists uncovered a building from 500-900 AD. Originally, this building was 67 metres long, but in the 700s it was redeveloped considerably and ended up being 83 metres long and 9.5 metres wide. It became clear that the Chieftain’s House was the longest Viking Age building ever found.
2000 – 2002
From 2000 to 2002 there were once again archaeological excavations at Borg. This time a building from the early Middle Ages, 1100-1200, was uncovered. During the same project, 2000 year old cooking pits were discovered. The area around the Chieftain’s House is full of the ancient remnants of people’s lives and the museum has to take this into account when planning new activities and buildings. Borghøyden is an area of great interest to archaeologists.
2009 - 2010
When a new museum building was to be erected it was once again time for exciting excavations. In 2009 and 2010, a large cooking pit site was uncovered. Cooking pits are large hollows in the ground used for outdoor cooking. Heated stones are used to cook the food. The cooking pits date back from 400 BC to 700 AD. This could mean that this was a gathering place even before the chieftain built his mighty hall. A number of the remnants of houses were also found during these, for the time being, last excavations. Up on the heights, the remnants of at least 8 longhouses have been found, probably even more. Four of them date back to the Iron Age / Middle Ages, the others have yet to be dated.
The Local Environment around Borghøyden
In the area surrounding Borgøyden heights, there are many fascinating archaeological remains. These help support the theory that Borg was the seat of a chieftain during the Iron Age.
Down by Innerpollen bay, there is a large collection of the remnants of Iron Age boathouses, and in nearby Bøstad there are burial grounds and one of the most distinctive circular groups of Early Iron Age buildings in North Norway.