In November of 2015, the members of the American Legion Post 176 in Arlington, Washington discovered a time capsule within an artillery shell that had been on display. The time capsule included contents from 1943, such as newspapers, military magazines, and a trench lighter from World War 1. The members discovered the contents while rearranging their lobby. While the members were unsure how they obtained the artillery shell turned time capsule, there is evidence to suggest that they weren't the first ones to open it.
Members of the American Legion Post
76 in Arlington, Washington discovered a time capsule within an artillery shell
that was on display in their war memorial within their lounge. According to the
Arlington Times, the time capsule was found in November of 2015 while members
were attempting to mount the shell to the floor. They removed the wooden replica of the shell head
and discovered items that had been placed inside from 1943. According to the
Arlington Times, the shell contained the front pages from local newspapers, a
trench lighter from World War 1, an Indian head nickel, and several military
According to Gizmodo, newspapers
were enclosed in Ziploc bags, which weren’t invented until 1968. This indicates
that someone else had opened the time capsule between the years 1968 and 2015
and placed the articles inside the bags to ensure that they would be preserved.
Gizmodo also says that the members of American Post 76 also found a letter that
said, “Thank you for the brandy,” indicating that those who had previously
discovered the time capsule was able to enjoy the alcoholic beverage that had
originally been placed there.
According to The Arlington Times, the
members of American Legion Post 76 don’t know how or when they ended up with
the artillery shell turned time capsule. The shell did include a typed letter
with the heading, “to the two survivors of the Last Man’s Club.” The letter
included a list of names of 42 club members as well as their phone numbers and
addresses. The Arlington Times said that the letter instructed that it should
be delivered to the two sons of club member H. R. Secoy; either Clyde Frank
Secoy or Harry Raymond Secoy. The members who found the time capsule attempted
to find Secoy’s sons or any members of the Last Man’s Club who was still
living, however they were unable to.
According to The Arlington Times,
the members of American Legion Post 76 were trying to decide whether or not to
add their own content to the time capsule alongside the artifacts that they
discovered. The Arlington Times quoted one of the members who discovered the
time capsule saying that they thought about putting music and pictures on
digital memory drives, but weren’t sure that future generations would be able
to access them due to the progression of technology. Matt Novak of Gizmodo
stated that if the Legion members were going to add digital content, that he recommended
a USB drive with jpeg, mp3, and word document files.