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Media Advisory & Westminster Mummy to Reveal Her Secrets

Pesed, the 2,300-year-old Westminster College mummy, will reveal her secrets on Tuesday, April 4, during a 2 p.m. press conference at the Mack Science Library in Westminster's Hoyt Science Building.  The press conference will feature Pesed; Dr. Samuel Farmerie, Westminster curator of cultural artifacts; and Egyptologist Dr. Jonathan Elias.  A bust, created by noted forensic sculptor Frank Bender, of what Pesed would have looked like at the time of her death will be unveiled. 

*** Please call Mark Meighen at (724) 946-7191 or e-mail meighema@westminster.edu to confirm your attendance. ***

A public lecture and viewing will take place in Philips Lecture Hall of Hoyt Science Building at 7 p.m.  It is sponsored by the Biology, Chemistry, Religion, History, Philosophy and Classics Departments, along with the Tri-Beta Biology Honor Society and the Westminster History Interest Group.

Visit www.westminster.edu/mummy for more information about Pesed.

In Her Own Words (as shared through Dr. Samuel Famerie, Westminster curator of cultural artifacts) &
THE PESED REPORTS REVISITED: THE RESURRECTION OF A FACE

Some four years have passed since my return from the Egypt, the Untold Journey exhibit at the Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts (Harrisburg, PA).  While there some 30,000 people, mostly school children, came to visit me.  As a preliminary to that event my thoughts were transmitted via mental telepathy to the  Curator of  Westminster College's artifacts collection. In these reports the results of my medical work-up were shared with readers. 

My condition, like that of your 85-year-old grandmother, was not good.  The X-rays and CT Scans indicated many senior citizen type physical infirmities.  The medical reports are accessible to the public at www.westminster.edu/mummy   Knowledgeable people revealed my age and innermost physical secrets.  The Federal Right to Privacy legislation protects the living against such revelations, why not the deceased?  A mummy must be a second class citizen.  A girl just can't keep her secrets!  

The general public has seen my insides, but not the outside.  Suddenly, that has all changed.  Recently, the mummies of my countrymen, King Tut and the College of Wooster mummy Ta-irty-bai, were CT Scanned and the images were used to create busts.  I must say they were handsome individuals.  Not to be outdone, I was scanned for a second time this past summer at College Fields MRI.  This might be viewed by some a game of  one-ups-manship.  Scanning yields cross-sectional images of the body.  Both of the abovementioned scans consisted of fewer than 1800 images, mine was about 2500.
 
The images were used by scientists at the University of Manitoba to construct a skull.  It was forwarded to noted forensic sculptor Frank Bender to complete a bust.  The greater number of images produces a bust with more refined features.  In my case, the sculptor also factored in aging and the effect of an arid climate on the skin.  Unlike the other mummy busts, my wrinkles are readily apparent.  Alas, I had no Nivea Lotion or Oil of Olay.  I also have a sculpted hair piece.

 If you would like to observe the real me in my matronly years, please attend my public unveiling.  It will occur Tuesday, April 4, at 7 p.m. in the Philips Lecture Hall of the Hoyt Science Building on the Westminster College campus in New Wilmington, Pa.

 Attention dirty old men! Unless there is a Super Bowl style "costume malfunction", the unveiling will not the same as a disrobing and the bust to be revealed will be from the shoulders up, not the shoulders down.
 
Hope we see each other at the unveiling!

Pesed -- March 27, 2006

Pesed: The 2,300-year-old Westminster College Mummy

Pesed Fun Facts &
" Pesed, a 2,300-year-old mummy, has called Westminster home since 1885.  She was donated to the College by The Rev. John Giffen, an 1872 Westminster graduate who was working as a missionary in Egypt.

" She is believed to be the mummy of Lady Pesed, daughter of Neshor (prophet of the eight gods associated with Min). The mummy was excavated from the city of Akhmim, about 235 miles south of Cairo.

" Originally thought to have been a teenager at the time of her death, scientific evidence indicates Pesed lived to an age of 55-70.

" The mummy was purchased for $8 and shipped to the U.S. for $5 in 1885.

" The mummy's first trip off campus was to Greenville in Feb. 1886. She spent two weeks as part of the Citizen's Hose Company Exposition.

" Legend has it that Pesed enjoyed an active social life during her early days at Westminster and would appear in coed's beds during the early 1900s. The under side of the mummy case lid has graffiti in the form of student names scratched into the wood. The earliest dated 1899.

" As recently as 1980, some local high school students were involved in an abortive attempt to steal the mummy.

" The mummy has had four different residences on campus: Old Main Memorial, Mary Thompson Science Hall, McGill Library, and the Hoyt Science Resources Center (Mack Science Library).

" The mummy was professionally restored by Joan Gardner of the Carnegie Museum thanks to the energy and fundraising effort of Susan Grandy Graff, a 1985 Westminster graduate who tackled the project during her undergraduate years.

" Pesed, and over 100 other ancient Egytian artifacts from the Westminster College Cultural Artifacts Collection, were part of the 2001 "Egypt: Untold Journeys" exhibit at the Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts in Harrisburg.

" Dr. Jonathan Elias, Egyptologist, and the Akhmim Mummy Studies Consortium have helped solve many of Pesed's mysteries through radio-carbon dating, x-rays, CT scans, and forensic reconstructive modeling.

Visit www.westminster.edu/mummy for more information or contact Dr. Samuel Farmerie, Westminster curator of cultural artifacts, at (724) 946-7053 or e-mail farmersa@westminster.edu

Pesed, Westminster's Mummy


Westminster College Marching Band Ready to Begin Season

The 98-member Westminster College Titan Marching Band will begin performances at the Mt. Lebanon Marching Band Festival Saturday, Sept. 13, and the Lawrence County Marching Band Festival Wednesday, Sept. 17.

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Westminster College Instrumentalists Honored in the State and National Bands

Seven Westminster College students earned chairs in the Pennsylvania Intercollegiate Band, and two were also selected to play in the National Intercollegiate Honors Band.

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Former Westminster College President Dr. Earland I. Carlson Passes Away

Former Westminster College President Dr. Earland I. Carlson passed away June 24.

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Westminster Welcomes Four Distinguished Alumni Lecturers

Four Westminster alumni: the Rev. David Dawson, Dr. Amy Herschell, Leslie Lawhead Imse, and Dr. Garth Patterson, will give Distinguished Alumni lectures Oct. 20.

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Music Professor Accompanied Benefit Concert

Dr. Elizabeth Harrison

Dr. Elizabeth Harrison, Westminster College assistant professor of music, recently performed a concert to benefit Relay for Life and the American Cancer Society that raised over $2,000. The concert took place April 15 at the First United Methodist Church in Sharon.

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Student Receives Grant for Undergraduate Research

The Westminster College Drinko Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning awarded an undergraduate research grant to Leanna Stitt, a Westminster senior English and sociology major, to continue research on 'Like Children Playing House': Images of the 1950s as Observed through Interviews and Fiction Literature."

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Business Majors Place in International Competition

Bethany Marchetti, Westminster College senior business administration major, and Matthew Saines, senior business administration and accounting major, tied for 55th place in the Best Overall Score in The Business Strategy Game for the week ending Sept. 28.

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Theatre Westminster to Present "Pride and Prejudice"

Theatre Westminster will present Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice April 30-May 3 in Beeghly Theater. This will be the final production of the academic year.

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Notes from the Field Station: Bluebirds

Male bluebird perched in a Virginia pine at the Field Station Feb. 24
Ben Armstead and his dad, Dr. Douglas Armstead, install one of 10 bluebird nest boxes at the Field Station.
The Bear Tree Connections Club watches a video about bluebirds in the Nature Center.

Eastern bluebirds, named Sialia sialis by biologists, have arrived for the season. In the weekend of the international Great Backyard Bird Count, February 12-15, two were spotted in our immediate locale and electronically reported to Cornell University.

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