Day 29: Karanis Revealed part II, an exhibition at the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology
February began and ended on Wednesday, which is the worst day for Katie to attend an event so, like the first day, I was on my own today. Fortunately for me, my mom is awesome and unable to withstand prolonged pouting so I was not alone.
Side note about my mother: she is an Ypsi snob (oxymoron?) and hates Ann Arbor, and driving herself places. It was hard to lure her to this museum which is located on State Street right in the heart of U of M’s campus. I was really only able to convince her by explaining that it was Spring Break and would be super easy for her to park.
I had never been to this museum before. In fact, I don’t think I ever really noticed the building before, which is kind of weird because it’s a pretty cool building.
The museum itself was okay. We were there for less than an hour. It was very beige. My mom thought it was interesting, in a forty-five minute sort of way. I also thought it was interesting, but kind of disappointing.
The second floor, which was the Karanis Exhibition, was the coolest part. What I thought was fascinating was learning about when and why U of M sent archaeologists to Egypt. The expedition was started by Dr. Kelsey (it was his museum, after all) who was a Latin professor in the 1910’s and 1920’s. He started the dig in 1925 and it continued well into the 1930’s, even after he died.
At first my mom and I were commenting on how U of M stole all these artifacts from Egypt and how we thought that was a little weird and sketchy. The exhibit actually addressed this. They said that everything they uncovered was then subject to the oversight of the Egyptian Antiquities Service and that they had to divide everything between the excavator’s institution and the Egyptian government. That’s not to say that the Egyptian Antiquities Service wasn’t totally corrupt, but it’s nice to know that U of M wasn’t just blatantly robbing another country of their history and heritage.
Overall, I liked this museum. Though, to be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever met a museum that I didn’t like. It’s not the best, or the most fun, or the most interesting but if you have an hour to kill it’s not a bad way to do it (if you’ve already been to the Natural History Museum). The Karanis Exhibit runs until May, drop by if you get a chance!