BOSTON (Reuters) - A centuries-old time capsule buried by Paul Revere, an icon of the American Revolutionary War, was unearthed during repairs at the Massachusetts State House in Boston this week, Secretary of State William Galvin said on Friday.
The box-shaped capsule from 1795 has not yet been opened, but is believed to contain artifacts that include coins, papers and a metal plate made by the silversmith-turned-soldier, Galvin, who is also head of the state historical commission, told Reuters.
"The question is, what condition are they in?" he said.
The capsule had been placed in the cornerstone of the State House by Revere and fellow American revolutionary Sam Adams, who was then the governor of Massachusetts. It was removed on Thursday after work crews began repairing a water leak in the building.
Galvin said the box would be x-rayed over the weekend, and will be opened in subsequent days if it is determined that is possible without damaging its contents. He said it would be replaced in the corner stone in the next few months, possibly with additional items from this era.
According to Galvin, the capsule had been removed, opened, and inventoried once before, in 1855, after its original leather container deteriorated. The box is now made of copper.
Revere is best known for alerting Colonial fighters to the approach of British Forces before the battles of Lexington and Concord in 1775.
Reporting by Richard Valdmanis; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn