Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Putnam Museum unwraps new Egyptian mummy display

Quad-City Times (Kay Luna)

In less than two weeks, on Aug. 22, a newly renovated - and completely transformed and updated - Egyptian mummy exhibit will open to the public.

Visitors will enter between two ancient-looking pillars, right into what Kastell hopes will feel like an undisturbed Egyptian tomb.

"My goal is to make the visitor feel like they're an Egyptologist studying this," she said.

But it won't be completely ancient.

The display will include surprising new information, gleaned from rare CT, or computed tomography, scans of the mummies that were donated two years ago by Genesis Medical Center, and it will do so with computerized touch-screen technology.

Right now, the mummy room is empty and dark.

The Putnam's two Egyptian mummies, still in their old cases, have been moved carefully into the room that connects to their exhibit room downstairs, but you'd have to crawl around and over shelving units to see them.

Things are definitely out of place everywhere downstairs.

But just wait. Big changes are on the way: more than $50,000 worth of work, paid for with lots of help from grants and in-kind contributions, said Betsy Matt Turner, the Putnam's development director.

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