SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS/BCN) – Students at San Francisco’s Cleveland Elementary School saw history played out in front of them on Wednesday, as a 100-year-old time capsule was opened up.

The copper box was taken out of the cornerstone of the school in the Excelsior District.

Former student John Weidinger, 69, found reference to it when looking at an old San Francisco Call newspaper article.

KCBS’ Bob Melrose Reports:

Inside, they found a letter written by the head of a homeowner’s group describing recovery from the 1906 earthquake, a copy of the state education code and some well-preserved pictures of students and teachers in 1910.

“I’m overwhelmed, but I’m going to read some of this stuff and see what’s different today then it was back then,” said Weidinger.

The students were “audibly excited” when they saw the pictures of their counterparts from a century ago, district spokeswoman Gentle Blythe said.

The writers of the letter said that the school was the only permanent structure on the block in 1910, and that the city was still recovering from the disastrous earthquake in 1906, Blythe said.

However, the letter predicted that by the time the capsule was opened, the block would be lined with “fine mansions,” she said.

The box also included a salary schedule that showed teachers made about $2,000 per year in 1910, Blythe said.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News contributed to this report.)

Comments (4)
  1. Sundance says:

    The teachers were over paid, considering the average annual salary in 1910 was $750.00.

    1. jenica says:

      This story is amazing! finding out your school has a time capsule! and someone telling you about the 1906 earthquake!

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