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Claremont unearths time capsule

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Claremont officials revealed the contents of their 25-year capsule to the public at the front of the City Council Chambers Oct. 3, along with refreshments and remarks.

Among the contents of the capsule were photographs of city employees, some of whom still work there; pamphlets from organizations, including a brochure from the Scruff McGruff campaign; a visitor’s welcome guide, a reproduction of a painting by Karl Benjamin and an issue of the Claremont Courier.

Guests were treated to lemonade, and cookies resembling oranges and lemons, as they waited for Mayor Peter Yao to speak along with the Mayor Pro Tem Ellen Taylor. The items were left on display in the slightly breezy, golden late afternoon.

The date of the opening also coincided with the city’s centennial.

“It is an honor to be here on this day… it is indeed a once in a lifetime day,” Yao said, echoing some of the comments of his fellow council members

“The pictures that were brought up were pictures of not only past employee’s, but are of employee’s who still work here,” Taylor said, and she congratulated and thanked longtime employees for their hard-work and dedication.

Many of the contents of the capsule suffered water damage over the years.

 “Nature seemed to have bypassed our engineers,” Taylor joked.

The capsule had been encased in concrete, however water still managed to get inside.

Among damaged items were business cards and a book, which look like they’d been burned, and many photographs of city employees and officials.

The city’s newest time capsule will not be buried deep underground and retain the risk of water and other damages. Instead, the capsule will be kept in a container and kept inside the city council chambers.

“This time, we’ll put it in a bigger container, which will enable us to put in other things besides photographs and paper,” Claremont Heritage worker Ginger Elliott said. “And we’ll keep it locked inside the building, so nothing the outside environment can do will harm it.”

Claremont locked away the new time capsule along with its contents on Tuesday in another ceremony in front of the council chambers.

Dan Sayles can be reached at

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