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The Mummies ARE HERE!


Written by: Discovery Place
Date: November 8, 2011

The exhibit has an astounding collection of 150 specimens and objects.


Category: Press Releases

Mummies of the World, the Largest Exhibition of Real Mummies Ever Assembled Debuts at Discovery Place Friday, November 11

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (November 8, 2011) - The highly-anticipated Mummies of the World makes it Southern U.S. premiere at Discovery Place on Friday, November 11, 2011. This astonishing collection of mummies and related artifacts includes a 6,420-year-old child mummy from Peru (the Detmold Child), dating 3,000 years before King Tut. Mummies of the World is the first exhibition of its kind to be showcased at Discovery Place, one of the most visited museums in North Carolina. The exhibition presents a never before seen collection of rare mummies from across the world including South America, Europe, Asia, Oceania and Egypt that spans eons of time and transcends history.

With its astounding collection of 150 specimens and objects, Mummies of the World is the largest exhibition of real human and animal mummies and related artifacts ever assembled. Through modern science and engaging interactive and multi-media exhibits, the exhibition reveals how the scientific study of mummies provides a window into the lives of ancient people, offering unprecedented insights into past cultures and civilizations. It also demonstrates that mummification - both through natural processes and intentional practices - has taken place all over the globe, from the hot desert sands of South America to remote European moors and bogs.

"Mummies of the World will change visitors' understanding of what mummies are and what can be learned from them," said John Mackay, president and CEO of Discovery Place, Inc. "The mummies in this exhibition have been studied using cutting edge, non-destructive technology to provide insights into lives and cultures of long ago. Modern science truly can shed new lights on very old ideas and Discovery Place is honored to offer such a perception-changing and thought-provoking collection to the region."

In addition to the Detmold Child, the rare and ancient objects presented in Mummies of the World include the Vac Mummies, a mummified family from Hungary believed to have died from tuberculosis; the Baron von Holz, a German nobleman found tucked away in the family crypt of a 14th century castle wearing his best leather boots; an ancient Peruvian woman naturally mummified in the warm desert air, with mysterious tattoos on her face and chest and long black hair intact; and a howler monkey from Argentina, with its fierce expression and adorned with a feather skirt and headdress.

"We are excited to bring Mummies of the World to Charlotte," said Marc Corwin, president of American Exhibitions, Inc. "Most people think mummies come from Egypt and are wrapped, but mummies come from all over the world. The exhibition is changing centuries-old perceptions about what the general public thinks about mummies and providing insight into the lives and cultures of these ancient people. Inside every mummy is a story waiting to be told, and Mummies of the World is here to tell those stories."

The concept for the exhibition began with the rediscovery of 21 specimens within the Reiss-Engelhorn Museums of Mannheim, Germany in 2004. A consortium of mummy researchers, known as the German Mummy Project, used DNA analysis, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computer tomography (CT), radiocarbon dating and mass spectrometry to learn more, and engaged the cooperation of 21 world-renowned museums, organizations and collections in seven countries to make this innovative exhibition possible.

The exhibition will be supported throughout its run at Discovery Place with educational programming, including:

  • The Keeper (at The Stage) - Visitors can learn about the mysteries of mummification through this dramatic presentation focusing on one man's duty to meticulously tend to the mortal remains of Russian revolutionary Vladimir Illyich Ulyanov, or "Lenin". Unlock the enigma of the "incorruptibles" - the Saints and Martyrs whose preserved bodies did not decompose after death - a puzzle that still baffles scientists today.
  • The Peak of Preservation (at The Stage) - Guests will ponder the amazing science of "accidental mummification" through the legacy of George Mallory. In 1924, Mallory and Andrew Irvine were the first Europeans presumed to have died on Mt. Everest. Since then, more than 200 climbers have perished on the slopes of Everest, and remain on the mountain as mummies because of the environmental conditions.
  • Ancient Textile Creation - This special demonstration in the Museum will help visitors unravel various types of ancient clothing and textiles. Learn how ancient textiles were created and used, along with their cultural importance and how they compare to current natural and synthetic textile fibers in North Carolina.
  • Mummies: Secrets of the Pharaohs: This giant screen IMAX® film follows researchers and explorers as they piece together the archeological and genetic clues of Egyptian mummies. These traces of the past create a window into the fascinating and mysterious world of the pharaohs. (note: additional fee for IMAX films)
  • Mummies of the World premiered to sell out crowds in Los Angeles at the California Science Center in July 2010. It quickly became a major attraction and one of the most successful exhibits in the Science Center's 13-year history. The debut of the exhibition at The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia in June 2011 attracted attendance by visitors from all 50 states and more than 20 countries in just one month after opening.


    Mummies of the World will be on exhibition from November 11, 2011 through April 8, 2012. Tickets are now on sale and reservations are highly recommended. Mummies of the World is a timed-entry exhibition, so before making a purchase, visitors will be asked to select the date and time of their visit.

    Visitors may purchase tickets:

    1. Via phone at (704) 372-6261 x300. Callers can purchase tickets to the exhibition with a credit card during regular Museum hours and may pick them up at Discovery Place Admissions prior to or on the day of their visit.

    2. Online at Users may purchase tickets online at Purchasers will bring the printed confirmation page to Will Call at Discovery Place Admissions to pick up tickets prior to or on the day of their visit.

    3. In person at Discovery Place. Visitors can purchase tickets at Discovery Place Admissions in the Museum during regular Museum hours.

    Admission to Mummies of the World is $24 for adults; $18 for children ages 2-13; and, $20 for students with ID and seniors ages 60+. All tickets include full-day admission to Discovery Place. Group and Member discounts are available. Children ages 12 and younger must be accompanied by a responsible adult while in Discovery Place.

    For more information: or

    About Discovery Place

    One of the top hands-on science museums in the nation, Discovery Place provides ever-changing, entertaining facilities that engage the public in the active exploration of science and nature. More than a half-million people from all over the United States visit Discovery Place, its IMAX Dome Theatre and Charlotte Nature Museum each year. In June 2010, the Museum completed an 18-month, $31.6 million renovation, resulting in a completely transformed and re-imagined Museum with all-new interactive exhibits. Discovery Place is supported, in part, with operating support from the Arts & Science Council.

    Discovery Place is located in uptown Charlotte at 301 N. Tryon Street. Convenient parking is available in the Museum's parking deck - the Carol Grotnes Belk Complex - at the corner of Sixth and Church Streets. For more information about Discovery Place, call (704)372-6261, visit or connect with Discovery Place on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

    About American Exhibitions

    American Exhibitions, Inc. produces world-class touring exhibitions for science centers and museums that excite, educate and engage visitors. As a longstanding member of the Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC) and the American Association of Museums (AAM), American Exhibitions, Inc. is one of the leading exhibit producers in the United States.

    About Reiss-Engelhorn Museums

    Reiss-Engelhorn Museums, an internationally acclaimed complex in Mannheim, Germany, has been one of the major venues for exhibitions in Europe in the fields of archeology and world cultures. With a collection that began in the early 1700s, the museum houses more than 1.2 million objects in its collection, and has over 300,000 square feet of exhibition space.

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