Sunday is the tenth anniversary of the September 11 attacks. Many organizations across the state will be commemorating the day, including the State Museum in Columbia.
The museum will be offering free admission to all police, fire, and rescue personnel on Sunday, while several sobering reminders of the day will be on display.
One of those artifacts is a steel beam from the World Trade Center towers.
“The Ports Authority of New York, which owned the World Trade Center, was very careful about giving out pieces of it,” museum spokesman Tut Underwood said, “They didn’t want it to become so common that it lost its meaning. They were very careful about who they gave these pieces to. We were very fortunate to receive this piece of history.”
Also on display this weekend are several photos taken of the World Trade Center site both during and after the attacks. Underwood said the highlight is one taken from space by South Carolina astronaut Col. Frank Culbertson. “It was taken on the International Space Station and you can see, from 250 miles in space, the big smoke plume coming off of Manhattan Island,” he said, “It’s very, very poignant and very strange to think that this tragedy could be seen from outer space.”
The museum has displayed the 1,000-pound section of beam for previous anniversaries of the attacks.