Who was originally buried in the coffin?
The coffin was for the “House Mistress Neskhonspakhered, daughter of the Doorkeeper of Amun Bakakhonsu and the House Mistress Heres.” She lived and died during the 25th dynasty, circa 760 B.C. to 656 B.C.
Nothing else is known of Neskhonspakhered, except that the outer coffin, in which this coffin would have been placed, is in the collections of the British Museum.
Ohio History Connection's coffin actually is the second, or middle, of three nested coffins. We do not know what might have happened to her inner coffin, which contained her mummy.
Cynthia Sheikholeslami presented a paper summarizing her research at the Annual Meeting of the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE), which was held this year in Cincinnati, April 19-21 2013.
What do the hieroglyphics on the coffin mean?
Text encircling the coffin
Speech by Re-Horakhty who is in the sky, (the) Lord of the Gods,
(and by) Geb, Hereditary Prince of the Gods,
(and by) Amun, Lord of the Two Lands, Heliopolitan,
(and by) Sokar-Osiris who is in his sanctuary,
so that he (= they) shall give (all) hetep-offerings and (all) djefau-offerings, all things
and all hetep-offerings which are good and pure,
all things [ ] good and enduring in love forever
on which the God lives / on which Amun lives for the ka of
the Osiris, the Noble Mistress of the House, Neskhonspakhered, True of Voice,
daughter of the Doorkeeper of Amun, called Bakakhonsu, True of Voice,
and (of) her mother, Mistress of the House, Tareh[ ]
Text on coffin lid
Speech by Re-Horakhty, Great God,
Lord of the Two Lands and Abydos,
so that he shall give all hetep-offerings and all djefau-offerings
(for) the Osiris, the Mistress of the House Neskhonspakhered, True of Voice,
daughter of Bakakhonsu, True of Voice, Possessor of Veneration,
and her mother, Mistress of the House, Hereses, True of Voice.
Translation was provided by Ohio History Connection volunteer Christina Rose, who has a Master’s Degree in Egyptology from Oxford University, working with Cynthia Sheikholeslami.