Atlas Obscura is organizing trips! Join us on an adventure »
Today Only: 50% off Atlas Obscura books and calendars at Barnes & Noble »

Found: A Treasure Trove of Candy Wrappers Dating Back to the Depression

They were hidden in a circulation chamber in an old Chicago theater.

Eric Nordstrom of Urban Remains has been exploring Chicago’s Congress Theater, which was built in 1926 and is currently under renovation. Earlier this year, Nordstrom, whose business reclaims objects from old buildings, started working his way through the old theater, finding newspapers, pipes, tools, and blueprints left there since the 1920s.

Recently, he returned to the theater, and this time, as DNAInfo reports, he found a trove of candy wrappers and matchbooks that date back to the theater’s earliest years.

These objects had collected in air circulation chambers, called plenums, beneath the theater’s balcony. They should have been cleaned; instead they became “a time capsule containing decades worth of refuse,” as Nordstrom told DNAInfo.

He spent 8 hours in the the theater; elsewhere he found more blueprints, as well as hip flasks and old cigarette packs. “There’s so much to share,” he wrote on Facebook.

Gastro Obscura covers the world’s most wondrous food and drink.
Sign up for our weekly email.