June 8, 2023

Cayman: Museum Opens Animatronic of Historic Female Trailblazer

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Grand Cayman, 24 May 2022 – The Cayman Islands National Museum (CINM) unveiled its newest permanent exhibit featuring one of the Islands’ most iconic and admired figures.

The opening of the life-like Miss Annie Huldah Bodden animatronic display was held on Thursday, 12 May, at the Old Courts Building.  The unveiling event was attended by MP and Parliamentary Secretary Mr. Isaac Rankine, Board and management of Water Authority – Cayman; Ministry of Youth, Sports, Culture & Heritage representatives and CINM staff. Remarks were given by CINM’s Director, Dr. Peggy Leshikar-Denton, and Chairman of the Board Mr. Craig Merren, with a special presentation made to the Water Authority, which funded the moving audio-animatronic.

Following the reveal the audience had the pleasure of experiencing the exhibit as Miss Annie spoke about her work and its impact on local life. Mr. Merren said: “It looks amazing and the attention to detail is exceptional. “Miss Annie would be proud.”

The unveiling of the animatronic is part of CINM’s and the Ministry’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. Miss Annie, who was a staunch royalist, met the Queen during the Monarch’s first visit to Grand Cayman in February 1983. 

Water Authority Director Dr. Gelia Frederick van-Genderen, said: “In 2018, the Water Authority used our 35th Anniversary as an opportunity to support the Cayman Islands National Museum’s efforts to preserve the legacy of the Old Courts Building and the pioneers of our judiciary by sponsoring the purchase of an animatronic figure of Miss Annie Huldah Bodden.

“We are thrilled to see an iconic Caymanian lady brought to life in this form. We encourage the public to visit the museum to experience the new animatronic and learn more about her story, achievements and the role Miss Annie Bodden played in the development of the Cayman Islands,” she added.

Created by LifeFormations, USA, the animatronic benefited from the input and direction of the museum’s Curation & Collections Manager, Mrs. Debra Barnes-Tábora. Following installation, it now forms part of the museum’s permanent Cultural History Gallery exhibits.

Dr. Leshikar-Denton said: “All the museum’s visitors can now experience the exceptionally dramatic figure of Miss Annie speaking and moving in the Old Court Room, where she so famously exercised her law license”. 

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