A group of San Francisco officials, including Mayor Breed, gathered Saturday morning to dig up a 90-year-old time capsule buried at the foot of Mount Davidson's massive cross.
The contents of the time capsule, a sealed copper box, have remained a mystery since it was buried in 1933 to commemorate the inaugural Easter sunrise service on April 1, 1923, according to Axios.
When it was opened, people found items like a bible, cards, books, newsletters, and newspapers such as "The War Cry," the San Francisco Chronicle, the Oakland Tribune, and a telephone directory, according to ABC7. The directory reportedly contained listings for businesses that no longer exist.
The Council of Armenian Americans of Northern California was behind the unveiling, as the organization is the legal owner of the cross, Axios reported.
Some history: The cross, a 103-foot-high concrete structure with reinforced steel, was reportedly built at the bottom of Mount Davidson, the highest natural point in San Francisco, in 1923 by the city, according to Axios. It served as a meeting place for San Franciscans, including for Easter services. However, it was sold to the Council in 1992 after the ACLU sued San Francisco saying it was illegal to have a religious symbol on public property.
Roxanne Makasdjian, the executive director of The Genocide Education Project, told Axios that San Francisco became a refuge for Armenians to escape the genocide in the early 1900s, and Armenians in the city wanted to become custodians of the cross as a “thank you.”
Axios also reported that a new time capsule will be reburied with an iPhone, an Armenian Bible, a face mask, issues of the San Francisco Chronicle, and some more current items.
Image via Flickr/Sharon Hahn Darlin.