“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Oceanport in Monmouth County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Centennial Time Capsule

Centennial Time Capsule Marker image. Click for full size.
September 16, 1960
1. Centennial Time Capsule Marker
Beneath this plaque lies a time capsule installed 16 September 1960 to commemorate the first centennial of the United States Army Signal Corps. The time capsule is to be opened in the year 2060 on 21 June, the birthday of the corps.

This time capsule contains items depicting the status of military communication in 1960, as well as historical material showing origins of the corps and progress during the first hundred years.

Pro Patria Vigilans

Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: CommunicationsMilitary. In addition, it is included in the Time Capsules series list. A significant historical date for this entry is September 16, 1960.
Location. Marker has been reported missing. It was located near 40° 19.01′ N, 74° 2.202′ W. Marker was in Oceanport, New Jersey, in Monmouth County. Marker was on Sanger Avenue, on the left when traveling north. Note: Ft. Monmouth is closed and access to the Post is restricted. Touch for map. Marker was at or near this postal address: 1000 Sanger Ave, Oceanport NJ 07757, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers
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are within walking distance of this location. Greely Field (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); This Tree Honors the Memory of E. Frederic Wright (about 500 feet away); Fort Monmouth Soldiers and Civilians Memorial (about 500 feet away); Purple Heart Memorial (about 500 feet away); Veterans Memorial (about 500 feet away); Tribute to Combat Pigeons (about 600 feet away); Fort Monmouth Memorial (about 800 feet away); Army Signal Corps World War II Memorial (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Oceanport.
More about this marker. The capsule is a cylinder made of 1/8" thick copper. It is 46" long and 24" in diameter, weighing, with contents, approximately 350 pounds. In the final sealing of the capsule, all air was evacuated and the cylinder filled with an inert gas. The contents are individually sealed in polyethelene envelopes. The capsule itself is placed inside a polyethelene container. These protective measures will ensure that the contents remain intact for the 100 year period of interrment.

The capsule was installed in a four ton concrete vault, 50" tall and 30" in diameter. The concrete cap in which the plaque is embedded weighs 550 pounds. This cap was also sealed to protect against moisture entering the vault. The marker itself is all that is visible to visitors.

On June 21, 2010 at approximately 11:00 hours, the plaque was raised and the capsule was disinterred for relocation to the U.S. Army Signal Center & School at Fort Gordon, Georgia where it will be re-opened in 50 years.
Regarding Centennial Time Capsule. In 1960 the Signal Corps celebrated its centennial: A century had passed since Congress had authorized the addition of a signal officer to the Army Staff on 21 June 1860 and Albert J. Myer had received the appointment six days later. The year-long observance (21 June 1960 to 21 June 1961) included: a traveling exhibit that visited all major Signal Corps installations, the Pentagon, and the Smithsonian; the publication of numerous articles in newspapers and magazines about the Signal Corps; a special broadcast of "The Big Picture"; and the burial of a centennial time capsule at Fort Monmouth. The Signal Corps could indeed look back with pride on one hundred years of growth and accomplishment. Having become the Army's third largest branch,
Crane lowering the capsule image. Click for full size.
September 16, 1960
2. Crane lowering the capsule
comprising about 7 percent of its strength, it had taken military communications from waving flags to speeding electrons and orbiting satellites.

The items which are included in the capsule should prove of great historical value when the capsule is opened on the 200th birthday. They will provide not only a complete and representative picture of the status and achievements of the Signal Corps in 1960 but also historical information dealing with the origin of the Corps and of major developments during the first 100 years.
Additional commentary.
1. Pro Patria Vigilans
The Army Signal Corps motto, Pro Patria Vigilans, is Latin for "Watchful for the Country."
    — Submitted April 10, 2008, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia.
Display of items placed in the capsule image. Click for full size.
circa 1960
3. Display of items placed in the capsule
The contents are individually sealed in polyethelene envelopes prior to placing them in the capsule.
Capsule being lowered image. Click for full size.
September 16, 1960
4. Capsule being lowered
List of items interred image. Click for full size.
5. List of items interred
Centennial Time Capsule During Disinterment image. Click for full size.
Photographed By R. C.
6. Centennial Time Capsule During Disinterment
The capsule was disinterred on 21 June 2010.
Centennial Time Capsule Plaque image. Click for full size.
Photographed By R. C.
7. Centennial Time Capsule Plaque
The plaque has held up fairly well given the 50 years of harsh weather exposure.
Centennial Time Capsule Penny image. Click for full size.
Photographed By R. C.
8. Centennial Time Capsule Penny
A 1960 penny found on top of the capsule. Possibly thrown in the vault by a worker or someone at the original burial.
Credits. This page was last revised on November 1, 2022. It was originally submitted on April 9, 2008, by Chrissie Tate Reilly of Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 2,993 times since then and 189 times this year. Last updated on June 22, 2010, by R. C. of College Station, Texas. It was the Marker of the Week June 27, 2010. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on April 9, 2008, by Chrissie Tate Reilly of Fort Monmouth, New Jersey.   6, 7, 8. submitted on June 25, 2010, by R. C. of College Station, Texas. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.

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Sep. 29, 2023