Our Time (Capsule)

Revealing of the new time capsule on September 6th, 2012. Photo by Tyler Webb

[I]n a full-circle tribute, Ryerson University revealed a new time capsule on Thursday, the night of September sixth. Eighty-one years to the month that former Maple Leafs owner Conn Smythe buried the now famous capsule under the cornerstone of his celebrated hockey shrine named Maple Leaf Gardens, Ryerson laid down a few mementos of its own.

While digging away the rubble of the old Gardens in the fall of last year, construction workers picked up a copper box dated September 1931 – it is a final vestige of the Original Six old-guard. Although small, the capsule held many a secret left behind by Smythe – a few old newspapers, a musty NHL rulebook, and a prospectus detailing the construction of the Gardens, among the more mystifying objects, such as the little ivory elephant.

Ryerson was so inspired by the findings that they decided to create a time capsule of their own, so enlisted the help of the School of Interior Design in creating the new container.

“With the new time capsule, we wanted to create a receptacle that told a story,” said Negin Valizade, one of a select few students who helped create the box. “Knowing the historic importance of this much-loved building and recognizing the construction of the original time capsule we focused our designs on the notions of integrity and strength.”

The brand new capsule and its contents were revealed at the new Mattamy Athletic Centre during a special half-time show, after the Rams men’s basketball team took a convincing 50-18 lead into the dressing room.

Greeted by a rousing crowd, Ryerson’s Vice President of Education, Adam Kahan, stepped onto Coca Cola Court to make the announcement.

“My hope is that they see we were a group of forward thinking people attached to the university that believed in integrity of material, practical engineering, as well as beauty and intelligence,” said another of the box’s creators, Monica Polo.

Contained in the time capsule are more than 10 different items; ranging from a Ryerson Rams jersey, to the puck dropped by Canada’s Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, at the official reopening of the Mattamy Athletic Centre, to copies of Ryerson’s two campus newspapers, and a photo of the crowd taken during the tip-off of that night’s exhibition game against Dawson College.

The copper box went the way of the penny, and the new capsule is stainless steel. It was created to match the original box’s dimensions, and Ryerson University and Loblaw Companies Limited hope to place it near the spot where the original capsule was found, at the corner of Church and Carlton Streets, under the cornerstone of Ryerson’s new athletic foundation.