Time Capsule Opened at Hospital

When Houston’s ST. Luke’s Episcopal Church was built in 1954, hospitals officials placed a time capsule inside a wall knowing it would be opened one day in the distant future. Since the hospital renovation, the wall has to come down. KUHF’s Bill Stamps was there this morning as the wall came down and the capsule was finally opened.

That’s the sound of construction on St. Luke’s new 12 story patient care center.

“What we’re doing is actually demolishing the original six story 1954 hospital building.”

Hospital administrator Mike Reno says when the new facility opens in 2012, it’ll give doctors and nurses much needed space.

“A 300-square foot operating room just doesn’t allow all the technology, instruments, people and the surgeons the ability to maneuver around and deliver the type of quality care that we need.”

Reno was part of a large crowd of people attending a hospital demolition ceremony and waiting to see whats inside a time capsule placed in the building back in 1954.

After about five minutes of pounding on the brick structure the metal box was pulled out and opened.

Inside was some old Episcopal Bibles, literature about the original hospital, and a 1954 issue of the Houston Chronicle.

On the front page, stories about a mother assaulted in her home and a dope user sentenced for a murder. The headlines of 1954 may not be much different than today’s, but hospital officials say the building that opened back then doesn’t compare to the one they’re building now.

Bill Stamps, KUHF, Houston Public Radio news.