Tourism Adventures

Last Call for “The Discovery of King Tut” Exhibit at San Diego’s Natural History Museum

“Everything old is new again.” Several tours of The Boy King have made the U.S. and international circuits many times over the last eight or nine decades. I’d never seen the recreations of Howard Carter and his teams’ discovery of the nearly untouched tomb of Egypt’s King Tutankhamen until this weekend.

March, 1977 National Geographic
March, 1977 National Geographic

If you are a child of the 70s and 80s as I am, you remember the variety of hype surrounding the world tour of some of these treasures. We had the incredible National Geographic spread, the cover that we still all think of when the subject of Egyptology is mentioned. In fact, I found this image of that March 1977 National Geographic cover on an Etsy.com site, so if you want it, click on the photo for the link to purchase… We also had Steve Martin’s fabulous parody with the excitement surrounding 1970’s revival tour. Lol.

This exhibition focuses on the discovery and care taken in recording the splendid artifacts uncovered, and though none of the items on exhibits are the original objects, the fascination remained intact. The actual treasures stay in Egypt now and tour no more.

If at any age you had ever watched the television specials, read magazine articles or pored through books, you were probably fascinated with the detail of this lost king’s rediscovery. The really interesting aspect of this tour is how with much care, the size and placement of the tomb’s rooms and objects are shown exactly as they were found. I was surprised by the size of the sarcophagi and coffins, and astonished to see the amount of objects catalogued- even though this was a small number of reproductions! After seeing photos and drawing and television specials since my childhood, it really was exciting to view in person the scale and placement of all the relics and the chambers in which they were uncovered.

Carter's Illustrations
Carter’s Illustrations
Collar from Carter's illustrations
Collar from Carter’s illustrations
Tour description of famous gold collar
Tour description of famous gold collar

The tour displayed reproductions of Carter’s drawings of what he found and descriptions of their placement. One of the biggest finds was the largest amount of period textiles ever to be discovered but unfortunately not cataloged as well as the traditional treasures of gold and precious stones.

IMG_6384
Three strand necklace
IMG_6385
Description of necklace

I’m trying to find where this tour is headed next, but the information is proving difficult to unearth… lol… apropos for this post, no? The company putting on the tour is Premier Exhibitions, Inc., and are also behind other mega-popular tours such as “Bodies, The Exhibition,” and “Titanic, The Artifact Exhibition.”

Since Premier Exhibitions is being so stingy with next tour dates info, I’ll leave everyone with the one clip that we all remember whenever The Boy King, King Tut is talked about:

One thought on “Last Call for “The Discovery of King Tut” Exhibit at San Diego’s Natural History Museum

  1. Glad we made it there, even if for a short time. One of the very few museum visits I’ve anticipated, and the content & quality of artifacts on display were more incredible than I either remember, or expected.

    Liked by 1 person

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