The Mummies of Guanajuato
Human Mummy
Biographical Information
Name(s) Ignacia Aguilar
Age Middle-aged
Sex Female
Status Unknown
Height Unknown
Culture Mexican
Date(s) 1800s
Site El Museo De Las Momias
Current Location
Location Guanajuato, Mexico
Catalog #

The Mummies of Guanajuato are a number of naturally mummified bodies interred during a cholera outbreak around Guanajuato, Mexico in 1833. The mummies were discovered in a cemetery in Guanajuato, making the city one of the biggest tourist attractions in Mexico.

The bodies appear to have been disinterred between 1865 and 1958. During that time, a local tax was imposed requiring relatives to pay a fee to keep their relatives interred. If the relatives were unable or unwilling to pay the tax, the bodies were disinterred. Ninety percent of the remains were disinterred because their relatives did not pay the tax. Of these, only two percent had been naturally mummified.


As a result of the storage of the Mummies of Guanajuato in a storage warehouse, the mummies were mummified through natural mummification. When the mummies were excavated, it was thought that minerals in the soil had caused the preserving effect, however it may be due to the warm, arid climate of Mexico that the mummies became naturally mummified.


The burying and mummification of these mummies occurred as a result of the cholera epidemic between 1865 - 1958. The bodies of those who fell victim to the disease were buried to prevent further contamination of the living by the infectious bodies of the dead.


This collection of mummies is known to have the smallest mummy in the world, a fetus from a pregnant woman who fell victim to cholera.

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