Celebrating 300 years

Boston time capsule returned to 1795 burial place in masonic ceremony

Friday, 19 June 2015

The capsule was buried on 4 July 1795 and moved to a new container in 1855, before being rediscovered last year at the Massachusetts Statehouse

In an elaborate ceremony steeped in tradition, a time capsule dating to 1795 was returned on Wednesday to the cornerstone of the Massachusetts Statehouse, with a set of 2015 US mint coins and a silver plaque added to its contents for a future generation to discover.

A procession of freemasons marched up Beacon Hill as a fife and drum corps, clad in Colonial garb, played on the statehouse lawn. Military units stood at attention and a 19-gun salute was fired, all part of an effort to approximate the historically documented atmosphere of 4 July 1795, when the newly built cornerstone was drawn by 15 white horses from Boston’s Old South Church, across Boston Common to the construction site for the new state capitol.

On that day, the then Massachusetts governor, Samuel Adams, and Paul Revere, then Grand Master, presided over a ceremony in which the time capsule was first deposited into the cornerstone.

During Thursday’s ceremony, Governor Charlie Baker joked that Adams is today better known to many people as a beer-maker than a key Revolutionary-era figure. But he said it was humbling to consider that the original capsule was placed just 15 years after Massachusetts adopted its constitution.

'What makes this time capsule so unusual is it’s not an interpretation from a historian, it’s not a passage in a text book, it’s the story that our predecessors from that Revolutionary time wanted us to know and understand,' Baker said.

Read more about this rare occasion over at the Guardian website here: http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/jun/17/boston-time-capsule-1795-massachusetts

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