Time capsule from a burnt-down cathedral opened

A time capsule, which was discovered in the tower of the burnt cathedral in Gorzów Wielkopolski, West Poland, was opened. It contained objects sealed in 1934, including documents and money.

Documents found in the capsule with visible bullet hole (by TVN24)

On July 1st a fire was reported in the cathedral, one of the most important historic buildings in the city, and after few hours of struggle it was saved, but the tower burnt down. During dismantling of the damaged parts of the structure a time capsule in form of a metal container shaped like a tube, was discovered. After few days of investigating the find it was publicly opened.

Opening of the time capsule (by TVN24)

It was feared that whatever objects were inside could have been destroyed by the fire as a bullet hole, possibly made by Russian soldiers during World War Two

, was found on the surface of the container. The tube was opened before a commission made of historians, museum workers and officials of the Magistrate and Church, revealing four coins, documents and an envelope. All the objects, preserved in a very good condition, are said to date to early 20th century.

Document from the capsule (by TVN24)

The documents found inside include a copy of an older document dated to 1781, and a list containing prices in the city from the 1920s, structure of the Town hall, names of city officials. Other document is dated to 1934 and contains a letter from the Mayor of the city that refers to the sealing of the capsule. All the documents are written in German and the latter possibly indicates which year the capsule was hidden. Other finds include an envelope with numerous bills of various denomination, and 8 coins. The youngest of the bills dates to 1923, and all coins date to the period of World War One. One of the coins is said to have been damaged by the bullet that struck the capsule.

German money from the capsule (by TVN24)

All the artefacts from the capsule are said to undergo documentation, including digital scanning, and will be handed over to the National Archive for further analysis. A new capsule will be created, with the copies of these documents, after the reconstruction of the cathedral is completed. The originals will be put on display in the local museum.

Money bill from the capsule (by TVN24)

(after TVN24)

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