Boston Museum Opens Paul Revere's Time Capsule

Coins and newspapers inside the brass box date from the 1650s to the 1850s. After going on display, the time capsule will be resealed and returned to its place in the cornerstone of the Massachusetts State House.

The Museum of Fine Arts Boston on Tuesday opened the oldest known American time capsule, which was first buried in 1795 by Paul Revere and Samuel Adams, who was then governor of Massachusetts.

Conservators opened the lid of the brass box, which dates to 1855, when the time capsule was opened then replaced in the cornerstone of the Massachusetts State House.

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After going on display, the time capsule will be returned to the cornerstone.

Using a porcupine quill and her grandfather's dental tool, conservator Pam Hatchfield carefully took out objects to find...

Conservator Pam Hatchfield and Mass. Archives Director Michael Comeau at work opening the #MFATimeCapsule


'Now I'm excited' and conservator Pam lifts a little off her seat in excitement #bostontimecapsule

A medal...

'General of the American armies, president of the United States' and we have a Washington medal #bostontimecapsule


This one minted 1652, when colony was not allowed to strike its own coins, with a pine tree #bostontimecapsule

A paper imprint of the Great Seal...

The seal of the commonwealth, which Bostonians find a very big deal #bostontimecapsule

A title page of records from one of the first Massachusetts settlements...

Title page of the records of the Massachusetts Bay Colony #bostontimecapsule

...and a silver plate commemorating the construction of the State House, as well as 20 years of U.S. independence.

Silver plate imprinted in 1795, maybe Paul Revere made, laid by Sam Adams #bostontimecapsule

"This is the most exciting project I've ever worked on," Hatchfield said. "This is what we as conservators live for."

H/T Guardian US reporter Alan Yuhas who live-tweeted the event.

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