Time cap­sule re­veals minted coins and old pho­tos

The Western Star - - Close To Home - BY KYLE GREENHAM SALTWIRE NET­WORK

Trav­el­ling from across the coun­try, hun­dreds gath­ered to see the open­ing of the time cap­sule – an event 50 years in the mak­ing.

A rarely seen clear sky and bright sun cast down as re­turn­ing res­i­dents and strangers with roots in the com­mu­nity came to­gether. It was the Fri­day fi­nale for Daniel’s Har­bour Come Home Year.

Ninety-year-old Trevor Ben­nett had set the event in mo­tion some five decades ago when he had pitched the time cap­sule to town coun­cil back in 1967. But not in his wildest dreams did he ever ex­pect to see the cap­sule re­opened.

“I never fig­ured I’d live to see it open,” Trevor said. “But I guess time’s been good to me.”

As he passed around a poem he wrote for the time cap­sule’s open­ing, old friends and col­leagues greeted Trevor. It brought some heart­warm­ing nos­tal­gia to both of them.

Bar­bara Laing Ben­nett came to the event in her Sun­day best — dressed in a bright blue pantsuit. She hoped to see a pic­ture of her mother, known in the com­mu­nity as Nurse Ben­nett, that had been placed in the cap­sule.

Genevieve Moss, wife of Har­vey Moss who was mayor at the time of the cap­sule’s seal­ing, was look­ing for­ward to see­ing let­ters and the Western Star news­pa­per that was the fi­nal item placed in­side.

MP Gudie Hutch­ings and Trevor’s son Jim de­liv­ered some re­marks be­fore a trac­tor lifted the con­crete block and 45 gal­lon bar­rel that the cap­sule was con­tained within.

A jack­ham­mer was brought out as com­mu­nity mem­bers took turns ham­mer­ing away at the con­crete and sea rock that sur­rounded the bar­rel. It took nearly an hour be­fore the cap­sule was fi­nally opened.

All stood ea­gerly as the jack­ham­mer pierced the con­crete and tore it apart block by block. Many who were young chil­dren and teenagers at the time of the cap­sule’s seal­ing could not re­call what was placed in­side it. They awaited as un­cer­tain as the oth­ers.

“It’s go­ing to be a sur­prise to every­one,” said Jim. “It’s hard to be­lieve its 50 years on and the time has fi­nally come.”

But soon words were spo­ken that brought an an­ti­cli­mac­tic turn to the event – “We’ve got wa­ter folks.”

Wa­ter that had seeped through the con­crete over the years had leaked through holes in the top cas­ing of the cap­sule. It left much of the con­tents in­side con­sid­er­ably dam­aged.

While minted sil­ver coins and some pic­tures were not too badly dam­aged, news­pa­pers, let­ters, and an en­cased Bible were left dis­fig­ured.

Two pic­tures were still in good enough con­di­tion that lo­cals could de­ci­pher the faces. One was of Nurse Ben­nett and for­mer mayor Har­vey Moss, the other of Win­ston Churchill, Queen El­iz­a­beth II and Prince Phillip.

Lau­ren Hull was a teenager when the cap­sule was sealed. He had re­turned to Daniel’s Har­bour from his home in B.C. He says while it was dis­ap­point­ing that not all the items could be viewed, it was not a to­tal shock.

Hull says it is good the coins re­mained in­tact, as 1967 was the last year they were minted in sil­ver. The other items are ex­pected to be sent away for restora­tion, and the coins will likely be soon on dis­play in the com­mu­nity hall.

Yet, the turn of events did not make the cel­e­bra­tions go sour. Af­ter every­one took a look at what was in­side, both that which was ru­ined and that which was in­tact, res­i­dents and vis­i­tors gath­ered for food and cake and pre­pared for the evening dance.

While more work now has to be done to see what can be re­stored and cleaned from the time cap­sule, with bring­ing hun­dreds of peo­ple to­gether to re­con­nect and meet with faces they hadn’t seen in years – Daniel’s Har­bour Come Home Year was a shin­ing suc­cess.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.