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Beneath the Ivory TowerThe Archaeology of Academia$
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Russell K. Skowronek and Kenneth E. Lewis

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780813034225

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813034225.001.0001

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Guns and Roses

Guns and Roses

Ritualism, Time Capsules, and the Massachusetts Agricultural College

(p.74) 5 Guns and Roses
Beneath the Ivory Tower





University Press of Florida

The collective effort in the recovery of a time capsule at the University of Massachusetts galvanized the fascination with time capsule creators and their intentions. The discovery raises a series of interesting questions about the act of encapsulating time. Similarly, the relationship of ritual to artifact becomes especially pertinent in treating time capsules as archaeological assemblages. However, despite the efforts made in their selection, time capsule inventories are arguably of less significance than the motivations for their creation and the rituals surrounding their burial. This chapter addresses these issues by considering two University of Massachusetts time capsules. It begins with a description of the events surrounding the interment of the first capsule in 1877 and its recovery from a hillside overlooking the center of the campus 114 years later.

Keywords:   time capsules, University of Massachusetts, rituals, artifact, archaeological assemblages, burial, interment

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