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The Accidental Mummies of Guanajuato Exhibit

 

Visit the Exhibit Website

"The Accidental Mummies of Guanajuato" exhibition last appeared at the Natural Science Center of Greensboro (NC). A new venue has not yet been announced. When details are announced, they will be posted here.

A view of the exhibit 

 

VENUE OPENING DATE CLOSING DATE
 

CLOSED Natural Science Center of Greensboro

 

July 14, 2012 January 20, 2013
CLOSED Dallas West End Market Place May 27, 2011 September 5, 2011
CLOSED Detroit Science Center October 2009 January 2010

The exhibit catalog


About the Exhibit

"The Accidental Mummies of Guanajuato" exhibit is divided into five rooms, each with its own theme:

Room 1: A Look Into the Past
Journey back over 100 years to Guanajuato, Mexico, a city known for its rich silver mines, artist Diego Rivera and colonial-era Spanish architecture. Nestled in the mountains of the Sierra de Guanajuato, the historical and picturesque city of Guanajuato is a collage of pastel-colored facades, balconies trimmed with iron work, flower-filled window boxes, cobblestone streets and breathtaking vistas of beautiful churches and plazas.

Room 2: Death & Transformation
Prepare to meet Guanajuato’s most famous residents in a beautiful and unique cemetery. Explore the graceful crypt walls, stately monuments and grave markers filled with poetry to learn about the history and practices of the cemetery, and the rare process of natural mummification. An opening in the wall of crypts offers a preview of the actual mummies.

Room 3: Life & Lore
It was in 1865 that cemetery workers in the Santa Paula Pantheon exhumed the remains of Dr. Remigio Leroy, and were astonished to find that his body had not decayed, but had instead mummified. Over time, more than 100 of these natural mummies would be discovered during exhumation from their crypts. For the first time ever, discover who the mummies were, how they lived and how they died. Visitors will see portraits by a forensic artist that show how they looked when they were alive, including illustrations of their faces and clothing. Visitors will also learn about the custom of dressing deceased children as angels and saints.

Room 4: Solving Mysteries
Visitors step inside a forensic lab to explore the skeletal structures, internal organs and cellular composition of the mummies through increasingly sophisticated medical science and technology. This area will reveal the secrets of the mummies in fascinating detail through diagnostic tools that include endoscopy, x-ray, computed tomography, molecular analysis and forensic reconstruction. Progressing from “gross anatomy” external examination to molecular structures, then to reconstruction, the forensic lab will feature areas on How to Read a Mummy, The Diagnostic Tool Box and The Artist’s Eye.

Room 5: Celebrating Life & Death
Visitors will join a celebration of The Day of the Dead and find out why this holiday is at the heart of Mexican culture. Learn the customs unique to the residents of Guanajuato as they observe this important holiday. See how the mummies have permeated Mexican popular culture. Explore the unique shops of a Guanajuato marketplace selling candies, authentic silver jewelry and souvenirs from the exhibit.

 

For more information about the Guanajuato mummies, click here.

For a closer look at some of the mummies, click here to visit the Guanajuato gallery.

 

     Where to find more information about them
 
Front CoverNot  much information is available about the mummy museum in Guanajuato, but I visited it myself and describe it in How to Make a Mummy Talk . Your best bet is to arrange your own trip there and get a look for yourself. Guanajuato is a beautiful city that deserves many tourists whether the mummies are displayed or not. Mummy Tombs Review

 

Another book with information about the Guanajuato mummies is Christine Quigley's Modern Mummies, an excellent survey of strange and mysterious mummies around the world. Mummy Tombs Review


Cover of Ray Bradbury's book, with photographs by Archie Lieberman...used copies available at AmazonYou might also read The Mummies of Guanajuato, an out-of-print book (published in 1978) by Ray Bradbury with photographs by Archie Lieberman. The book contains a short story written by Bradbury entitled "The Next in Line" (written in 1947) about a couple who visit the Museo de las momias where the wife has an interesting experience. Filled with haunting black-and-white photos of the mummies by Archie Lieberman.


Finally, National Geographic's Mummy Road Show paid a visit to the museum (this show aired on Halloween 2002). You may be able to find additional information on the National Geographic website.

 

 

 

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