Construction rarely goes as exactly as planned, but one “bump in the road” on Garfield Ave. was unusual indeed. You never know what you’ll find when you start digging in dirt that hasn’t been moved in decades.
As the heavy equipment started clearing the way for the new Garfield Avenue project, the construction team found a surprise — a mysterious metal box buried deep underground not far from the Chippewa River.
The crew was stunned to have unearthed what appears to be the long-rumored but often thought-to-be fictional 1916 time capsule.
“We thought it was just a piece of scrap metal from a previous project,” said Mike Rindo, chairman of the Garfield Avenue Project Committee, “but after we continued digging and cleaned off the top of the box, we noticed that 1916 was etched on the lid.”
Some of the contents were about what one would expect to see in a time capsule— newspaper clippings, money, and the original blue and gold beanie. But then things became pretty strange. Beneath those items were some scribbles on pages of well-worn paper: sketches resembling the new Davies Center and a single word on a scrap of paper. This word happens to be Chancellor Jim's Twitter password (soon to be changed).
Greg Kocken, curator of the UW-Eau Claire special collections and archives, was asked to oversee the preservation of these found items.
“These historical artifacts are real treasures, and it is an honor to be a part of such an important moment in campus history,” said Kocken.
The items are on display today only in McIntyre Library. Price of admission is a contribution for our very own 100-year time capsule, to be opened in 2117.