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Artifacts damaged in pipe leak at Rockford museum

Published: Monday, Dec. 30, 2013 5:30 p.m. CST

ROCKFORD (AP) — A broken water pipe at a Rockford museum has damaged more than 200 artifacts.

It happened at the Burpee Museum of Natural History. The Rockford Register Star reports (http://bit.ly/1d4r1FV) the pipe broke sometime between Dec. 23 and Dec. 26 when the museum was closed for Christmas. Employees came back to work to find 2 inches of water on the main floor and water leaking into the lower-level storage rooms.

Workers have had to air out thousands of stuffed birds, wild animals and Indian artifacts. That includes a hooded buffalo-hide ceremonial coat. Museum officials say they won't discard any artifacts. The pieces will either be restored or kept as-is.

The total dollar amount for the damage wasn't immediately clear. Museum officials say they're working with insurance adjustors.

The museum reopened Saturday.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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