Paul Horner passed along this "mystery of history," a soon-to-be-opened 1820s time capsule discovered at West Point.
Taking an X-ray of the time capsule
A long-forgotten time capsule at West Point recently discovered inside the base of a monument and believed to have been left by cadets in the late 1820s is expected to be pried open Monday.
The contents of the small lead box could possibly provide a window into the early, more Spartan days of the storied U.S. Military Academy.
It's not certain exactly when the box was placed in the monument's marble base or who chose any items inside, though a committee of five cadets that may have been involved with the time capsule included 1829 graduate Robert E. Lee, the future Confederate general.
The box will be opened during a livestreamed event.
The container was discovered in May during restoration to a monument honoring the Revolutionary War hero Thaddeus Kosciuszko. A construction manager made the surprise find and carefully pulled out the hefty box, which is about a cubic foot.
Cadets in the 1820s honored Kosciuszko, a Polish military engineer, with a column near where current classes march and play soccer. As an officer of the Continental Army, he designed wartime fortifications at the location along the Hudson River, before the military academy was established there in 1802.
A plaque indicates the monument was erected by the corps of cadets in 1828. Other evidence suggests it wasn't completed until 1829. That includes a July 1828 letter from a committee of cadets involved in the dedication, including Lee, seeking advice on lettering for the monument.
X-rays indicated there is a box inside the container, but there are few clues whether opening it will produce a historical bounty or a bust reminiscent of Geraldo Rivera's televised unsealing of Al Capone's vault in 1986.
Will there be any coins or medals inside? Stay tuned...
To read the complete article, see:
Ten-hut Time Machine? West Point to open time capsule possibly left by cadets in the 1820s
Wayne Homren, Editor
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