TWINSBURG -- Local artifacts from 41 years ago were unearthed June 23 at Crown Hill Cemetery, as a time capsule that was buried in 1976 was dug up in rainy weather.
People gathered around the capsule, speculating at what was inside the numerous sealed plastic bags, containers and wheels.
"I wonder what's in those wheels?" one person inquired.
"Oh my gosh, that's someone's teeth!" said someone else, drawing laughter. The teeth, in a plastic bag, were from a dentist's office.
Unfortunately, what also was in the time capsule was water.
Lots of water.
And it was apparent through a cursory look at the contents that some items were going to be unsalvageable.
"Just for reference, the new time capsule will be water tight," said Michael Turle, a Twinsburg High School student and Boy Scout who will catalog the items and display them at Founders' Day July 22 on Twinsburg Township Square, at the Twinsbur Historical Society booth. Turle is also heading up efforts to collect items for a new time capsule, one that will be buried sometime later this summer. He has undertaken both projects as a part of his Eagle Scout project.
"Everything is basically dried out and some of the items are usable," said Andy Tomko, Twinsburg Historical Society president. "We also have a blanket signed by all the members of the Bugle Corps from R.B. Chamberlin High School in 1976."
Several items seemed to be in good condition as they were carefully removed from the capsule.
Light bulbs from General Electric. A booklet from Chrysler. Information from Brownberry Ovens. A July 1976 copy of Reader's Digest. Items from the Twinsburg Chamber of Commerce and the Twinsburg Banking Co.
"Here's something from the junior high," Turle said as he pulled out a bag. "This is from back when they were still the 'Dodge Demons.'"
"Hey, this is from my Dad's company," said Russ Mortus, a Twinsburg resident for 73 years. The sealed plastic bag contained items from Lamson & Sessions, a business that made fasteners, nuts and bolts. Mortus said his father was a manufacturing supervisor in the company's Kent office.
Tomko said another item was a hand-written letter from Mortus to his son, "with minimal damage."
Turle said he anticipated some water damage "but this was more than I expected."
"I'm hoping we can salvage some of it," he said.
Tomko said the items would be taken to the historical society building to be dried, salvaged when possible, preserved and inventoried.
"What we can't salvage, we can't salvage, unfortunately," Tomko said. "But we have the equipment to salvage as much as possible."
Preparing the new time capsule
Turle said he is selling $10 binder pages to people who want to include letters, notes, photographs or other small items that will fit in an overall large binder, to be placed in the new capsule. Residents can purchase them online at twinsburg200.com.
"Several boys from my Scout Troop are going door-to-door selling sleeves, so if they're lucky, residents may have the opportunity to get their sleeve this way," Turle said.
The size of the time capsule and how much will be included will depend on the amount of money he can raise, Turle said.
Plans are to purchase a small, 3-cubic-foot capsule for $500 and a 13-cubic-foot time capsule for about $2,500. So far, Reminderville has pledged $500 and the township has pledged the same. Turle added he has not yet heard back from the city, but that he has "high hopes that the city will come through with a donation of an equal or larger capacity."
"While there is no set deadline for raising money, any funds raised past the point where the capsule is purchased will go toward the [Twinsburg] Historical Society," he said, adding he hoped to purchase the time capsule sometime soon.
For details, contact Turle at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 330-888-3378.