If you thought you had to travel all the way to Egypt to look at mummies, think again. Mummification as a process of preserving dead bodies was not only prevalent in ancient Egypt, but also across other ancient civilizations. Many Central and South American cultures used mummification to preserve the dead bodies of their loved ones and rulers.
The ancient Paracas civilization, which ruled over a large swathe of Peru between 800 BC to 100 BC was particularly efficient in preserving corpses. This mysterious civilization was highly advanced and is known for its intricate artifacts and pottery. About a hundred years ago, a mummified skeleton was found in Peru by an American railroad worker who brought it back to Pennsylvania.
His son, Scranton dentist named Dr. G. E. Hill, donated the mummy to Everhart Museum of Natural History, Science and Art in Scranton, Pennsylvania in the 1920s. For almost hundred years, nobody knew to whom the mummy belonged. Researchers couldn’t conduct test on the mummy as it wasn’t in a good condition and any intervention would have resulted in its destruction.
Recently, advanced technology allowed archaeologists to conclude that the mummy belonged to a teenaged boy from the Paracas civilization. He probably died due to per-existing health conditions. Unfortunately, his clothes and other artifacts haven’t survived and only the mummy survives at the museum. If you wish to learn more about Paracas, you’d have to make a trip to Peru. Not only will you be able to learn about the ancient Paracas civilization, but you can also view various artifacts and items belonging to this ancient civilization.
Lima has a number of museums which can help you understand Paracas civilization better. The National Museum of the Archaeology, Anthropology, and History of Peru, Lima, is a great place to discover the mysteries of the Paracas. The museum has an immersive experience that will leave you amazed at just how advanced Paracas civilization was.