Bostonian Society: ‘See You in 2114!’
After buffing, shining, re-guilding, and painting the lion and unicorn statues from the Old State House, the Bostonian Society is preparing to place them back on top of the historic building this weekend, along with a time capsule that they will stuff inside one of the structures to be sifted through by city residents in 2114.
On Sunday, November 23, the Bostonian Society, a non-profit group, will unveil the refurbished iconic statues, which first came down in September to be repaired at a studio in Woburn, during a public ceremony. The “dazzling” spectacles with then be hoisted up by crane and secured in place for at least another century before they come down once again.
It’s then that officials from the Bostonian Society hope that our ancestors will crack into the lion’s base and open a custom-made copper box filled with trinkets and memorabilia from 2014. “The Bostonian Society, stewards of the building since 1881, has inserted a new time capsule into the lion, with a variety of materials proposed by the public. Skylight Studios conservator Robert Shure placed the new copper box inside the gilded scroll that forms the base of the lion statue,” the organization said in a statement.
The Bostonian Society decided to put together the time capsule, which includes letters from local journalists, after they discovered a similar box inside of the lion when they removed it from its perch to make necessary repairs. That time capsule, dating back to 1901, contained historical artifacts and letters that showed what life was like in Boston 113-years-ago.
After weeks of crowdsourcing ideas from the public, and coming up with a list of suitable items to be included in the new capsule, the Bostonian Society decided to share with the public what will greet the people of Boston 100 years from now.
Below is the complete list of 29 items that the Bostonian Society managed to cram inside the custom-made copper box:
• 2013 Boston Marathon medal and biography of donor Gregory Soutiea
• Letters from three journalists (including one from Boston magazine)
• Photograph of current Mayor Martin Walsh
• Photograph of former Mayor Thomas Menino
• Tickets from April 20, 2012 Fenway Park Centennial Boston Red Sox game
• David Ortiz limited-edition bobblehead
• Apple iPhone 5
• Boston Globe newspaper, October 10, 2014, with story about discovery of 1901 time capsule
• Letter from British Consul Suzie Kitchens, on current United States/Great Britain relations
• Photograph of Governor Deval Patrick with Prime Minister of England David Cameron, at Boston Marathon Bombing Memorial, 2013
• Winning student essays from the 2013 Boston Duck Tour Essay contest
• Foreign Relations of the United States 1977-1980, Volume III
• Letter from Brian LeMay, president and executive director of the Bostonian Society
• Facsimile of a 1901 letter from George Litchfield, Business Manager of the Boston Traveler
• Facsimile of a photograph of the team who worked on the 1901 Old State House restoration project
• Photograph of the current restoration work teams
• Photograph of the current Old State Restoration Project team
• Old State House Lion and Unicorn: An Unfolding Story, an essay written by architect Donald Tellalian
• Box from Mike’s Pastry (with no cannolis, unfortunately)
• Letters from children participating in Greenovate Boston’s Community Summit 2014, and a Greenovate Boston button
• “Idahoan’s research uncovers time capsule,” facsimile of an article from Idaho Statesman, October 28, 2014
• Two 18th-century hand-wrought nails removed from the Old State House tower in 2008
• Two 19th-century cut nails removed from the tower in 2008
• Fragment of a 1713 brick removed from Old State House during the 2014 west façade restoration project
• Menu from Legal Sea Foods restaurant, 2014
• Photographs of Boston’s central artery 2003, and Rose Kennedy Greenway, 2013