Macabre Tourists Flock to Mummy Museum

Mexican exhibit includes 56 fully preserved corpses
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 18, 2009 10:22 AM CDT
A mummy is displayed in the Mummy Museum in Guanajuato, Mexico, Saturday, Nov. 1, 2008.   (AP Photo/Daniel Jayo)
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(Newser) – A Mexican museum tells the story of the local mining industry with an unusual exhibit: 56 mummified corpses. The bodies, from as early as the mid-1800s, were removed from crypts that had been tightly sealed, allowing the bodies to dry intact. Elsewhere mummies might be considered freaky, but in Guanajuato, the dead are a major draw, reports the Los Angeles Times.

"These are the best mummies in the world," a museum staffer said of the nude corpses on display—one stabbed in the ribs, another grasping her face as she was buried alive. They offer perspective on a mining industry that dates to the days of imperial Spain and drew immigrants from as far as China. But even visitors with strong stomachs recoil at the mummified babies on display. "I like morbid stuff," said one, "but I was surprised."