You’ll Likely Be Dead When These Colorado Time Capsules Are Opened
Is there anything as exciting as finding something left behind by someone else decades or even centuries ago? We all love a good treasure hunt, and let's be honest, every time you tear open a wall of your old house built in the 50's or 60's, you're secretly hoping to find a bag of cash or some fancy antique hidden in there. No? Just me?
Over the history of our state, some have gone to great lengths to make sure that everyday items from their place in time are discovered in the future.
Back in 2013, at what was once the old YMCA building in Fort Collins, a time capsule buried in the building's cornerstone in 1907 was discovered during demolition. Once opened, its contents were donated to the Fort Collins Museum of Discovery.
And more recently, in the fall of 2020, not one but two time capsules were opened in Greeley, from October 1967 and 1970, respectively.
Which makes me wonder: what other time capsules are out there waiting to be opened? And will I be alive to see what's inside?
There's a website called Waymarking.com that lists 36 time capsules across the State of Colorado. Here's a look at some that are currently sealed and/or buried, to be opened on a date in the future. How many will you be alive to see?
I'm wish I could live to see it, but:
Denver International Airport - Time capsule to be opened in 2094.
Oh yes. Back when DIA was opened in 1994, a time capsule was sealed in the main terminal with, among other things, a Colorado Rockies autographed opening day baseball, clippings from the Rocky Mountain News - sadly gone but not forgotten - and the Denver Post, Rock Bottom Brewery Restaurant labels, a second-grade class poem about Colorado and even some tokens from Blackhawk casinos.
I'm definitely not gonna live to see it:
The Denver Mint - Time capsule to be opened in 2106.
In 1906, the Denver Mint opened and began pressing coins in Colorado for the very first time. And in 2006, then Mayor John Hickenlooper presided over a ceremony marking the Mint's first 100 years of service, as now the oldest U.S. Mint facility in the country that still actively presses coins for circulation. In the time capsule they placed some freshly minted coins from 2006, some photos and notes from current employees of the Mint, to be read by those in the future, and a Mayoral Proclamation.
Very most likely not gonna live to see it:
Colorado State Mental Health Institute in Pueblo - Time capsule to be opened in 2079.
It first opened in 1879 as the "Colorado Insane Asylum" which, let's be honest, sounds pretty insensitive if not terrifying. By their centennial anniversary in 1979, it had been renamed to Colorado State Hospital and ultimately the Colorado State Mental Health Institute, as the number of patients has significantly decreased over the last century with the advance of modern medicine and mental health studies. Simply put, doctors know how to better treat people nowadays. The inscription on the time capsule to be opened in 2079 reads: Dedicated to the enrichment of human lives. A record of permanent achievement. Not quite sure what could be inside this one, but I'm definitely curious.
Could actually see this one:
Windows in Time, Monte Vista - Time capsule to be opened in 2060.
It'd be a bit of a drive, but in theory if I'm still alive in 2060, I could drive down and have a peek at the opening of "Windows of Time" - which is located more specifically in Homelake, just outside of Monte Vista. The art installation honors veterans and their families of the Colorado State Veterans Center at Homelake, and the time capsule includes letters, pictures and items from residents, staff and visitors.
Please RSVP a no, I'm not gonna make it:
Boulder Civil War Monument - Time capsule to be opened in 2096.
Located outside the Boulder County Courthouse is a Civil War monument erected in 1914, donated by the Women's Relief Corps. A time capsule was placed at the base of the monument in 1996, reading "Time Capsule for the Civil War Monument, Centennial Camp 100 S.U.V., Placed September 24, 1996. Time Capsule to be opened September 24, 2096. No word as to what might be in it and unfortunately, I won't live that long to find out.
Might just make this one:
Millennium Clock Tower, Littleton, CO - Time capsule to be opened in 2051.
At the start of the new millennium, a clock tower was built in in Downtown Littleton at the Light Rail Station. At its base is a time capsule that wasn't sealed until the tower's dedication, in October 2001. On it is inscribed, in part, "This clock tower and time capsule is a gift to the Littleton community. A commemorative of the 21st Millennium, and a tribute to Littleton's special spirit of Volunteerism." The crazy part is thinking about how much has already changed in the last 20 years. Imagine how old that stuff will feel in another 30.
Darn it, definitely going to miss this one too:
Colorado State Capitol Building - Time capsule to be opened in 2090.
To commemorate the one hundred year anniversary of the day the first cornerstone of the capitol building was laid, then Governor Roy Romer and members of the Colorado House and Senate sealed and buried a time capsule at the northeast corner of the building. The inscription reads: "The time capsule beneath this stone contains messages and memorabilia from the people of Colorado in 1990 to its people in 2090." Man, the 90's were all the rage for 100-year time capsules. We couldn't have buried any in the 20's or 30's? We're going to miss all the good ones!
For a pretty comprehensive list of a whole bunch of Colorado time capsules, visit Waymarking.com.
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