LOWER MANHATTAN — As the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks approaches, a new book is offering a inside look at the poignant personal artifacts that will go on display at the still-under-construction 9/11 Memorial and Museum.
“The Stories They Tell: Artifacts From the National September 11 Memorial & Museum," set for release next month, gives readers a first chance to see the museum's exhibits, while also telling the stories of survivors, first responders and the families who lost loved ones.
The long-delayed underground museum at the World Trade Center site will house large artifacts of the attack, including twisted steel from the Twin Towers and a crushed fire truck, as well as smaller, personal items, like a wedding band and a last recorded phone message from victims. The museum is slated to open in spring 2014.
The items donated by family members of victims include a watch worn by a passenger on Flight 93, the hijacked plane that crashed in Pennsylvania.
Gripping his son Todd Beamer's watch, which still displays the date Sept. 11, David Beamer said he felt blessed to have gotten some of his son's remains back.
“It was there, you know,” Beamer said of the watch, choking back tears in a video highlighting some of the personal stories behind the museum pieces. “It was there.”
The $35, 160-page book, written by Clifford Chanin, director of the museum's education and public programs, and the museum's director, Alice Greenwald, also features a foreword by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the museum's chairman.
The book, which includes 150 color photographs of the museums collections, will be released Sept. 10.