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park city, Kansas
March 26, 2010
St. Louis, Missouri
August 20, 2003
From the dinosaur area you move into the Hall of the Ancients. I was stunned by the variety in this area and the well done commentary paragraphs that accompanied each display. The first display I saw was of Cuneiform. They have a foundation stone from a building in ancient Ur described as Abraham's Temple, circa 2150 BC. We used to believe that cuneiform developed from pictographs however the latest theory suggests it evolved from a desire merchants had to quickly account for what they were trading. Three slashes might mean three jugs of wine or three bars of gold. So, a symbol for wine or gold was added to the three slash marks and thus the beginning of written language. The Assyrians and Babylonians are also mentioned close by. Next is a small display of Etruscan artifacts. The Etruscans were defeated and assimilated into the Roman Empire so thoroughly that it has only been lately we?ve learned much about them. The next several display cases are concerned with the Roman period. There are displays of jewelry, coins, pottery and even medical tools from that time. The Eastern Mediterranean cultures are represented by displays from the Minoan Civilization (2000-1450 B.C.) and the Mycanaeans (1600-1200 B.C.) Lastly but certainly not least is a large display of Egyptian artifacts. There are several sarcophagi and hieroglyphics tablets among many other displays. It is a good collection.
The next gallery has the Hall of the Royalty. There are no pictures allowed in this area perhaps because there is much gold jewelry here. This is also where you will find a small display of knightly armor.
Next is the Hall of the Americas. This begins with very nice displays of Mayan and other pre-colonial Native American cultures. There is an amazing display of solid gold Mayan jewelry that is very rare. After looking at the first Americans, the displays take a look at America at war. There are displays of the Revolution, Civil War, Korean War and huge displays of military armaments and ships related to WWI and WWII. I'm not as knowledgeable in these areas but close to a quarter of the museum is devoted to this study.
We enjoyed our visit at this museum very much. For anyone else who would like to take a look, there is an elevator for access to the upper floors and the hours of operation are: Monday-Saturday 10am-6pm; and Sunday noon-6pm. Enjoy!
From journal Wichita, Kansas-A More Than Pleasant Surprise