Time Capsule Discovered at Original Washington Monument

time capsule

A 100-year-old time capsule was recently found in Baltimore at the original Washington Monument. However, local representatives are hesitant to open it up due to the fact that the capsule itself is so damaged that opening it up just might destroy what is inside it. They plan on moving the box to a nearby art museum, where conservators should be able to figure out if the contents inside the capsule can be protected.

The time container was found at the monument when Baltimore officials were attempting to restore it. The Washington Monument has its 200th anniversary in 2015 and this particular capsule was put under the memorial just over 100 years ago, on Sept. 12, 1915, when Baltimore was celebrating the centennial anniversary of the monument.

The box was discovered on Wednesday, and it was behind a plaque, which was marked with the year 1915. The repair personnel had no idea a time capsule had been hidden inside the monument until they happened on it by accident. The project’s superintendent found the box while he was looking behind the plaque while the renovations were going on.

The repair group wanted to find out more about what kind of plaster had initially been used in the construction of the building. They proceeded by looking behind the plaque. However, they discovered the time capsule instead. The group was overjoyed when they all first caught sight of the capsule.

Even though it has yet to be opened, an X-ray was performed and it showed that inside the box was possibly prints of the Baltimore Sun newspaper, celebratory programs that were from the monument’s centennial, and various other items from the period it was put in place.

The Baltimore Conservancy plans on making another time capsule to put in place of the discovered one, filling in the hole made when the original was placed in 1915. Various members of the Conservancy stated that they want to put items inside the box that would be interesting to people who are find it a century from now. One individual wanted to include a cell phone but others stated that one would not work in 100 years, so apparently it will not be going inside.

The time capsule will stay at the museum for the meantime. It is there for safe keeping while restoration continues on the monument, which is located in the region of Mount Vernon of Baltimore. The renovations have been going on most of this year and will continue on into 2015.

The statute representatives explained that the time capsule is actually a box made out of copper. The capsule appears to never have been opened since it was put behind the plaque and there is not date on it telling individuals when they are supposed to open it. The art conservators should be able to provide aid in helping with the ultimate opening of the capsule even though the contents appear to be in poor quality. Complete restoration on the original Washington Monument is believed to wind up sometime in the spring.

By Kimberly Ruble


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Photo by Victoria Risten – Flickr License

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