How to make a time capsule?

How to make a time capsule

The reasons why most people make a time capsule is because it records history and a specific time in life. It is an ideal chance to pass those memories to other generations, that may be forgotten over time.

What content can you put in a time capsule?

creating memories

Time capsules can be of any form, so long as they are preserved.  The types of time capsules you can create are:

  • Family history
  • Important moments in time eg Lock-down 2020, VE Day Celebrations
  • Craft
  • Future goals – this would be fun to read in 10 or 20 years, especially if you have your children write to their future selves.

Are we making ‘time capsules’ without realising?

Yes we are, as with every cherished moment shared with family or friends we are creating a form of time capsule. For instance, I have created a time capsule of my son growing up from birth, and this is something I will continue. 

For me it is a form of time capsule as Nicholas has the option to look back on his past.

The only difference is storage and we will not register it as an official time capsule. We may not be adding letters, but we are creating history with our  labeled photographs.

Help your child create a capsule

Time capsule children

MGB have found two very good websites that will help you and your child create a time capsule, and make it fun. 

We have  found the download at Kiddycharts and it was Long Creations who created the eform, an 11 page document that your child can complete.  Infact, as grown ups, you can make your own on A4 copier paper.

You can find Long Creations on Facebook so if you visit, please mention you came over via us. Thank you

Kiddychart charges and Long Creations sheets include as an example:

  • Moments in history.
  • Recording your hand prints.
  • A child writing a letter to yourself.
  • Interview letter with your parents.
  • A letter from your parents.

The other credit goes to  Kids of the Wild  as they give a list about other contents to include in a time capsule.

Kids of the Wild’s list includes:

  • What to do.
  • Memorabilia to include.

Why are time capsules good for preserving memories?

creating memories

One regret I have is not learning more about our past from family who have since passed away. Imagine if ancestors knew about time capsules too.

Yes we do have some  stories that have been passed down verbally through the generations, but how long before these are forgotten? How can we talk about our family history and make sure that our relatives are not forgotten? Even those stories that at the time did not seem important but when you look back they are!

One specific memory for my personal family time capsule

There is one specific memory I want to include in my personal family time capsule, and it is a story that my aunt told me. It is important to me that my son Nicholas and also his children and grand-kids are aware of small instances that have happened to our family in the past.

When my Nan was young, herself and her sisters would sell chopped firewood to the wealthy. One day a wealthy gentleman purchased wood but refused to hand them the money. 

He asked them to wait and eventually threw money to the floor. For some unknown reason he decided to place the coins into a fire before paying for his wood. So when my nan and her sister picked the money up, they burnt their hands.

It is this type of history that will be forgotten as time goes by, but is it very important to realise and understand what your past family have gone through as they were growing up.  I have told my son about this part of our history and many others, but I doubt he will remember.

How easy is it to make a time capsule?

Compiling a time capsule can be as easy as you want it to be.  Although you do need to consider the contents. Purely because of the size of the container, outdoor elements and time length.

What can you use for your secure container?

It is important that your time capsule is waterproof, rust proof and most importantly it will protect the contents from the weather elements. If you are storing indoors, you do need to consider deterioration – for example damp, fire proof and rodents.

Consider how long you want to store your time capsules.  We would suggest using a stainless steel container. 

There have been recommendations that you can use plastic containers or a glass jar, but this is not recommended and you need to consider condensation.

How long does a time capsule take to make?

Your time capsule can take as long as you want it to take. We are creating a family time capsule, and this is going to take us several months to complete. Due to the lock-down we will not be able to put this time capsule together as we all live in different locations of the United Kingdom. 

Don’t rush creating your time capsule. Make sure you think seriously about the content.  Remember if you want to pass information to either your relatives or new owners of your home in 10 or 20 years.   It is important that they enjoy what they find, learn about our living history (Covid-19), our funny family history and about the house the time capsule was found in.

How will others know about your time capsule?

There are several ways to inform others of your time capsule, you don’t want it forgotten about.

The oldest time capsule found was in USA 2014, this dated back to 1795, which should have been opened in prior but it was moved and forgotten about. This is totally amazing, but it does stress the important and informing others of your time capsule.

Who to inform of your time capsule?

You can inform close family and friends that you have a time capsule and arrange to open for instance in 10-years. The only problem is that the family might forget, or pass away so it is important that you register your time capsule officially.

Remember why you want to create a time capsule

When creating your time capsule it is important to remember why you are creating it. Try not to deviate from what you are hoping to accomplish, and not to keep it all serious. Add some comical pictures that will make everyone smile.

We are living during a frightening virus where life has completely changed. This devastating worldwide living history needs to be recorded as does global spirit.

During this time  it was the 75th anniversary of the British V.E. day and we won’t forget celebrating this as #stayathome. Nor will we forget WW veteran Captain Tom who at age 99 raised over 32 million amongst others.

And finally we need to remember those that have lost their lives because of the coronavirus.


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