In May 2013, a Neenah, Wisconsin, family reportedly discovered a time capsule in an underground fallout shelter in their backyard (video below).
Ken Zwick and Carol Hollar-Zwick moved in to their home in 1999 knowing that the backyard included a fallout shelter built during the Cold War, according to USA Today. They had no idea, however, that the previous homeowner stocked the shelter with food and survival gear in the 1960s.
“We assumed it was just this empty space,” Hollar-Zwick told USA Today at the time of the discovery.
Upon unlocking the shelter, they found Army surplus boxes floating in water that had accumulated inside the shelter. Everything inside the boxes was in perfect condition.
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Here are some of the photos of the underground fallout shelter, courtesy of Ken Zwick:
Though some of the boxes included labels that suggested there might be explosives inside, a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigation determined that everything inside was safe.
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(One of the boxes from the underground fallout shelter. Photo Credit: Ken Zwick)
“It was all of what you would expect to find in a 1960s fallout shelter," Hollar-Zwick said. "It was food, clothing, medical supplies, tools, flashlights, batteries — items that you would want to have in a shelter if you planned to live there for two weeks."
Here are some of Ken Zwick's photos of the items found inside the fallout shelter:
People in Neenah reportedly built fallout shelters in case of a nuclear blast.
“The idea, at least for people in Neenah, was that if there were an attack in Madison or Milwaukee or Minneapolis or Chicago and the radioactive contamination spread over this part of the state, people would be able to hide in their shelters for a period of two weeks,” a history professor at the University of Wisconsin, said.
“That was the suggested interval of time," he added.