Nebraska Sightseeing with Google Maps: An Update

Posted on May 10, 2005 at 06:44 AM

One other interesting thing I found, but is really hard to see on the map, is the world's largest time capsule in Seward Nebraska. Built in 1975 by local resident Harold Davisson, the time capsule is filled with approx. 5000 "artifacts". Items range from children's letters, a 1975 Chevy Vega, a Kawasaki motorcycle (both with zero miles) to a leisure suit. It was the time capsule creator's hope that when the capsule was opened on July 4th, 2025 someone would wear the leisure suit while riding the motorcycle. The time capsule can be seen in the image below. It is the tiny white square in the middle of the picture.

Aerial of Seward Time Capsule

The capsule itself weighs 45 tons and measures 20' by 8' by 6'. The pyramid you see in the picture was added in 1983 and contains a badly beaten up 1975 Datsun.

Seward Time Capsule

I initially questioned the fact that Seward Nebraska could be home to the world's largest time capsule. Someone in the last 30 years has had to of built something bigger. Which brought me to the Millennium Vault 2000, a 100 cubic meter vault constructed in the side of a hill on the grounds of Guildford Castle in southern England in the year 2000.

The Millennium Vault 2000, which won't be opened until the year 3000, contains thousands of 20th century souvenirs, which are a gift to the future residents of Britain, in order to give them a better idea of what life was like at the beginning of the millennium. A sample of the items within its confines would be a Mini Cooper (specially treated to withstand time, a Sony Walkman, a collection of jokes (which given British humor probably aren't funny now, but might be hysterical in the year 3000) and letters to the future British people from personalities like Prime Minister Tony Blair.

So which time capsule is the world's largest? Let's do a straight comparison based on volume:

Seward Time Capsule:

20' x 8' x 6' = 960 cubic feet / 27 cubic feet = 35.556 cubic yards

Millenium Vault 2000:

100 cubic meters = 130.79 cubic yards

So based on the previous calculations it looks like Guildford England is home of the worlds largest time capsule. Sorry Seward, but at least you'll be able to don a leisure suit and cruise around in a Vega in about 20 years.

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