Logan Square Time Capsule Offers Glimpse Into Early 1900s

Steve Miller
June 21, 2018 - 3:46 pm

courtesy: Andrew Schneider

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- It was two years ago when one of the oldest churches in Logan Square closed its doors. Now that the building is being developed into condos or apartments, a preservation group has opened the church time capsule.

The Episcopal Church of the Advent has been in Logan Square since 1906, and that's when the cornerstone was laid, with the time capsule.

Andrew Schneider, president of Logan Square Preservation, recently opened it.

One document, he says, talks a lot about the contractors and how much they were paid to build the church.

Andrew Schneider

"And then it gets to the end and it starts talking about the day of the actual installation of the time capsule,” he said.

"I'm sitting here, and I'm the first person to look at these documents in 112 years, and the priest in charge, Daniel LeBaron Goodwin, writes, 'Today, January 6, 1906, we have a regular thunderstorm. The lightning is startling and the thunder is shocking,' or something to that effect."

Andrew Schneider

Schneider said the time capsule documents bring you right into the moment.

"You get the sense of the optimism and the bright outlook these folks had for the future, as they were laying the cornerstone for their church,” he said.

The church closed in 2016. The congregation itself lasted 115 years; it was founded on Fullerton in 1901.

Among the documents in the time capsule: a flier for a community activity for "skule" students.

courtesy: Andrew Schneider

"It's just completely laced with the worst kind of grammatical and spelling errors. It's all a big joke of course," says Schneider.

"That's not the stuff you see,” he said. “When you think about history, you see pictures of people in posed photographs - in very extreme high collars, looking very stiff.

"And so to have this thing that is just this really wonderful comedic -- full of humor and life -- it makes you realize just how much you had in common with these people 100 years ago."

Schneider says Logan Square Preservation would like to exhibit the time capsule documents.

Andrew Schneider