By Shannon Barbour
Baylor’s Mayborn Museum Complex plans to showcase pirate loot found in the deep sea in its new exhibit “Shipwreck!”
The exhibit will open at 10 a.m. Saturday at the complex and will have a special treasure hunt for guests.
Hundreds of artifacts, including coins, bottles and porcelain figures from several shipwrecks, will be on display until Sept. 16 in the Thomas E. and Emilyne Weed Anding Traveling Exhibition Gallery.
The exhibit features artifacts from and pirates who often sailed around the Mediterranean Sea.
After traveling for nearly 10 years, the exhibit will come to Baylor’s campus for the first time to educate and entertain people of all ages. The exhibit has been traveling since 2006.
“The mission of this exhibit is not only to present these really cool artifacts and treasures from shipwrecks from all over the world, but also to bring the visitor into the experience of what it’s like to be a real deep-ocean shipwreck explorer,” said Ellen Gerth, archaeological curator at Odyssey Marine Exploration.
“It’s an ideal venue for families and for students to learn about deep ocean archaeology,” Gerth said. “This is in a community that really supports the educational aspect of exhibits.”
Rebecca Tucker Nall, assistant director of communication at Mayborn Museum Complex, said she has enjoyed looking through the exhibit and learning about each ship and time period.
“You can learn about the technology that’s used to recover shipwrecks,” Nall said. “The artifacts that were recovered are basically a snapshot into that period of time so you can learn a lot about the material culture of that time period from these artifacts.”
Guests can also step into a hurricane simulator, which generates 75 mph winds, the equivalent of a Category 1 hurricane and similar conditions some of the ships suffered.
“This artifact rich exhibit with its participatory learning component is exactly the type of unique experience we are pleased to offer the community,” said Ellie Caston, director of Mayborn Museum Complex.
Each Tuesday in July, “Shipwreck!” will host Treasure Tuesdays, which include activities such as fossil presentations, ventriloquists and interactive performances.
Guests can pick up a treasure hunt map on Saturday from 11 a.m. to noon for a chance to find the treasure chest and win a prize.
The exhibit is free for Baylor students and other college students may enter at a discounted rate. Tickets cost $10 for adults, $5 for children and $9 for senior citizens.