Mummifying a Chicken (Cornish Game Hen)

As part of our studies of Ancient History (Nomads/First Civilizations through Fall of Rome) using Story of the World I, we are mummifying a chicken. Well, not a chicken. We decided to scale the project down to Cornish game hen size.

First – For our family, this is a Man Project. I turn the Activity Guide with the instructions in it over to my husband. He is the one that obtains the materials (other than the hen, which I picked up at the store) and sets aside time for the project each day/week with the necessary child-involvement.

Second – This is our second time doing this particular mummification project. Four years ago, the older two girls helped out. This time, it is child #2 (second time through) and child #3. I anticipate something like this occurring in another four years with child #3 (second time), child #4, and child #5. Too early to plan that far ahead, however.

Third – My darling husband tweaks the instructions because he is a miser with his salt solution. We liberally employ the hair dryer to help dry the chicken out faster. We encourage others to do the same.

Fourth – Remember, wash your hands frequently & well when handling & when finished handling the hen.Every day for the first several days (week?), he pulls out the hen, brushes off the salt, pulls out the hair dryer, and then repacks new salt solution into the bag. Eventually, it is ready to rub in oil & wrap in linen. We’re almost one week in & are definitely still in the drying-out stage. (Post updated at the bottom with ‘finished’ pictures.)

After rinsing the hen & squeezing out excess water, DH starts in with the hair dryer.


While drying out the inner cavity, DH showed the kids where the organs (heart/lungs) used to be.

The girls asked dad what all the bumps on the outside of the hen were for. Each bump = a feather.

Mixing up the salt/baking soda/etc. solution.

Did I mention that my husband likes to “help out” the mummification process by using the hair dryer?

This is our reserve of the salt solution to use when drying out our hen. DH puts the hen in a gallon Ziplock bag with some of this.


We had newspapers, papertowels, and rubbing alcohol on hand when finishing the ‘mummy.’

Finished Mummy

When we were done, this is what the plainly wrapped mummified hen looked like.


About doucementgently

I'm a thirty-something female with loads of kids, a great husband, and lots of things on my mind. I plan on blogging about homeschooling, personal finance, the economy in the U.S., politics, family life, and the things my children do.
This entry was posted in activities, homeschool, Story of the World and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Mummifying a Chicken (Cornish Game Hen)

  1. Pingback: Baking With History « Learning As I Go

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s