Shocking discovery under woman’s floorboards rocks homeowners: ‘It was so strange’

Time capsule
Time capsule

This homeowner was floored by what she found in her 130-year-old house.

Madeline Goodwin, from Swindon, in Wiltshire, England found a rusty metal time capsule underneath her floor after receiving a surprise visit from a former resident of her address.

“It was very cool and interesting,” Goodwin, 26, told South West News Service of the serendipitous circumstances. “What are the chances! It was so strange that it all aligned.”

A woman found this time capsule underneath her home. Madeline Goodwin / SWNS
A woman found this time capsule underneath her home. Madeline Goodwin / SWNS

Inside the box, Goodwin found souvenirs from every era the house has survived: a penny from 1901, a hat, a cigarette packet, a bible, a 2007 newspaper, a DVD and a letter from a past family matriarch.

The keepsake might have remained hidden if a mystery woman hadn’t inquired about buying a table that Goodwin had listed on Facebook Marketplace.

“I gave the woman our postcode and she said she used to live on the street, so I gave her our specific address and she said she used to live in our house!” Goodwin recounted. “When she came to collect the table, she told us about the history of the house.”

She told Goodwin that the Victorian home was built in 1890 and had remained with her family until it was finally sold in 2007.

“That’s when she told us about the time capsule her family had left in the foundations of the building underneath the floor boards,” Goodwin continued. “Her family had been adding to the capsule until they left the property in 2007 — but she was very [elusive] and wanted us to find it ourselves.”

Inside the capsule was an old penny. Madeline Goodwin / SWNS
Inside the capsule was an old penny. Madeline Goodwin / SWNS
The time capsule was 130 years old. Madeline Goodwin / SWNS
The time capsule was 130 years old. Madeline Goodwin / SWNS

That’s when Goodwin and her partner went on a time capsule hunt and found it beneath the third floorboard in the cupboard under the stairs.

“Though unfortunately, the weather had gotten to the ammunition box — so the letter from this lady’s family was illegible,” Goodwin said. Of the unlabeled DVD, she noted that they’ll “have to track down a way of playing it” to find out what’s on the disc.

She’s also thinking about what items she can add to the time capsule now that her family has taken over the home.

“We still have all of the original Victorian doors still in the property and each has a different door handle, so we were thinking of adding one of those to the capsule,” she said.

“We could also leave a USB, too, with images and maybe songs.”

But first, Goodwin plans to move the items into a stronger box so that they don’t get damaged in the future.

“I want to try and preserve the stuff as best as possible,” she said.