RMSC Conservator Ralph Wiegandt cut along the soldered seam of the time capsule's lid to prepare it for its official opening.

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Rochester's 1873 Time Capsule was officially opened at the Rochester Museum & Science Center on December 1, 1999. The invited audience of some 100 people included descendants of some of the citizens who attended the 1873 interment ceremonies as well as the 1999 counterparts in City government, the police and fire departments, and even the Rochester firm that had fabricated the copper box–John Siddons and Company. In the weeks following the ceremonial opening, museum staff carefully removed the contents–item by item, documenting each piece as it was removed from the one-cubic-foot copper box. Folded items were slowly unfolded, and envelopes were steamed open. Each object was numbered, catalogued, photographed, and researched in preparation for an exhibition at the Rochester Museum & Science Center.

Time Capsule Exhibit

The exhibit, entitled "Rochester's 1873 Time Capsule," opened on February 19, 2000, on the third floor of the museum building. In the center of the 2000 sq. ft. gallery are four sets of drawers containing the time capsule materials arranged in single layers.

Visitors enjoy discovering the contents themselves by pulling out one drawer at a time. Two additional cases hold the books that were in the box. The remainder of the gallery is divided into six areas addressing in further detail specific stories that characterized Rochester 127 years ago. Each is enhanced by items from the museum's permanent collections.

The exhibit will be available through July, 2001, from 9:00am to 5:00pm, Mondays through Saturdays, and from noon to 5:00pm on Sundays. Click here for information on how to find the RMSC.

The RMSC gratefully acknowledges the following people for their help in researching aspects of the time capsule's contents: Karl Kabelac, Theresa Lehr, Gerald Muhl, Kathleen Urbanic, Philip Maples, and the staff of the Local History Division of the Rochester Public Library.

 

       
       

Old City Hall Chronology 1873 Newspaper Article

 

 

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Old City Hall Chronology 1873 Newspaper Article