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What was in the Old State House lion?

The old lion's inventory is in and it includes a Teddy Roosevelt campaign button, nails from the Old South Church and a slew of newspapers.

A wooden chunk of the old lion sculpture from around the turn of the 20th century. CREDIT: Bostonian Society. A wooden chunk of the old lion sculpture from around the turn of the 20th century. CREDIT: Bostonian Society.

The old lion's inventory is in and it includes a Teddy Roosevelt campaign button, nails from the Old South Church and a slew of newspapers.

The Bostonian Society has itemized the contents of the 1901 time capsule found inside the lion statue that was affixed to the southeast corner of Boston's Old State House.

Elizabeth Roscio, the society's library and archives manager, has recorded the condition of each item, made an inventory and placed all the relics in acid-free folders. Roscio says the contents are, overall, in "remarkably good" condition. She has plans to make archival scans or photographs of all the materials.

There was little fading of ink or deterioration of paper quality, according to Roscio, which is most likely thanks to the seal of the lion statue. It was apparently tight enough to keep air and water out.

The full list of items found in the capsule is as follows:

· Foreign Relations of the United States, 1896 (hardback book)
· Blank packing paper
· “Wood removed from the Old Lion age of same 21 years in 1900” (notation hand-written on reverse of business card for American Painting & Decorating Co. and tacked onto the back of the piece of wood)*
· Cabinet card of Mayor A.P. Martin [Mayor 1884] with inscription “Yours truly”
· Photograph of Nathan Matthews, Junior [Mayor 1891-94]
· Photograph of Josiah Quincy [Mayor 1896-1899]
· Photograph of Edwin Curtis [Mayor 1895]
· Sealed letter inscribed “A message to posterity from the daily newspapers at City Hall”*
· Sealed letter from C.W. Ernest, Esq. Mayor’s Private Secretary, Boston, Mass.
· Sealed letter from the Boston Traveler
· McKinley and Roosevelt campaign button
· Campaign button for John D. Long, candidate for Vice-President
· Samuel L. Powers for Congress campaign button
· Nail from Old South Church, and a nail from the Old State House
· Unsealed letter from A.J. Rodway, describing the heraldic seal with the Lion and Unicorn
· The Banker Tradesman – pages listing the financial, legal, real estate, and building information, Vol xxix, No. 4, February 20, 1901
· Boston Daily Globe, February 16, 1901 advertisement of circulation
· Boston Transcript, February 19, 1901, from Edw. G. Richardson, City Hall Representative
· The Boston Post, February 19, 1901 and February 21, 1901
· The Boston Herald, February 21, 1901, with leaflets of advertisings rates
· Electrotype of Boston Herald, Herald Boy
· Miniature electrotype of Boston Herald from April 11, 1900
· Die cut for printing of the Boston Herald building, 255 Washington Street
· Cabinet card of Moses Gulesian, (donor of lion and unicorn statues)
· Blank piece of letterhead from M.H. Gulesian
· Business cards for S.D. Rogers & Co (Carpenters and Builders), Mr. Edwin H. Woods (Publisher and Treasurer of the Boston Herald), G. Fred Richmond (Boston Herald), and John A. W. Silver (Deputy Superintendent of Public Buildings)
· ‘Organization of the School Committee of the City of Boston,’ 1901 (pamphlet)
· Card with inscription “Geo. G. Proctor, 665 Sixth St., South Boston, Mass”
· Parchment scroll listing employees of the Public Buildings Department, February 1901
· Bill for tuition and one piece of music, January 1, 1901 signed by John A. Silver
· Group photograph of individuals who worked on restoration of the Old State House, February 19, 1901
· Grand Army of the Republic lapel button
· Grand Army of the Republic badge
· Boston Journal, photograph showing the 5th Massachusetts regiment
· Fernald Family History, on electrotype?
· Veterans button [GAR?]
· Six photographs of GAR officials [these are pages cut out of a publication]
· Cabinet card of W. Murray Crane, Governor
· Cabinet card of John B. Smith, Governor’s Secretary
· Cabinet card of C.G. Davis, Sergeant at Arms
· Cabinet card of William W. Campbell, Deputy Sheriff
· Cabinet card of Thomas Hart, Mayor
· Cabinet card of Milton C. Paige, Superintendent of Public Buildings
· Cabinet card of John A. W. Silver, Deputy Superintendent of Public Buildings
· Commonwealth of Massachusetts Executive Department Directory, 1901
· Letter from American Painting and Decorating Company about the work done on the Old State House, February 18, 1901

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