The barrow was excavated by William Copeland Borlase (great-great grandson of William Borlase):
Six miles west of Penzance on the brow of a hill on the right-hand side of the road leading to the Land's End, was an undisturbed cairn 38' in diameter, mounted on a pile of natural rocks, and surrounded by a ring of 16 large granite blocks set on edge.
On 21st Aug. 1868 the author proceeded with some miners to the spot, and caused an oblong trench to be sunk across the centre of the mound. About 18 inches from the surface was a pile of rocks, (the natural formation of the crest of the hill,) as will be seen on the accompanying plan.
Under a large flat stone a kistvaen was revealed. 1'4" in breadth and 18" deep constructed of eight stones in two layers of four each. These side stones were purposely fitted closely round an urn, mouth downwards which was filled with bones and two chipped flints, two more of which were found outside the urn but within the kist.
The vessel, which had no bottom, was brownish and not well baked and was ornamented with the usual chevron pattern, placed horizontally. It had four pierced bosses or handles. The bones, probably of a woman were not so completely calcined as is usually the case.
The sloping rock in the centre of the barrow was surrounded on all sides with ashes and charred wood; and beneath it, when raised, was nearly a cartload of ashes, as white and fresh as if a fire had scarcely been extinguished from them.