Earlston is a market town that lies at the edge of the Leader water that dates back to around the 13th century. It was originally called Arcioldun or Prospect Fort. The town today has a good selection of pubs and shops and in the market square Earlston's war memorial along with the rose garden beside it was planted in 1953 to mark the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.
In the town there is an ivy-clad ruin called Rhymer's Tower, a keep which dates back to the early 1200s. It is the traditional residence of Thomas Learmonth known as Thomas the Rhymer who was a poet, prophet, and legendary friend of the Elves, who was born here about 1225. He achieved his status when he correctly predicted the death of Alexander III in a fall from a horse in 1286. This prediction was made to the Earl of March in Dunbar Castle the day before the accident happened. Thomas the Rhymer gained his powers, so the story goes, after meeting and kissing the Queen of Elfland while hunting on the estate of Melrose Abbey.
A stone which marks that Auld Rhymer's race lies in this place was transferred to the new kirk in 1736, and again to the most recent church building in 1892