For Waukee community members such as Teresa Broderick, it seems not long ago that the city buried two time capsules on the downtown triangle.
“It feels like yesterday,” Broderick said, “I remember the day's celebration and riding in a covered wagon with the centennial celebration.”
Back in 1969, the Waukee community buried both a time capsule to be opened in 2019 along with one to be opened in 2069. Now 50 years later, the Waukee community once again came together at the triangle, this time to unearth the time capsule as part of the Waukee Celebration Festival.
“This is 150 years of the City of Waukee. People love the city and the history and I think the capsule does a great job of reminding people of the history of this town,” Waukee Mayor William Peard said.
The unearthing of the time capsule this past Saturday was led by members of the Waukee Historical Society. Established back in 2012, this group was created as a result of a leadership class project for the Waukee Leadership Institute.
“I proposed the idea of starting a non-profit historical society back in 2012 as our leadership class project and was the president for the first five years. The time capsule is a great way to look back at days gone by and bring people together to celebrate Waukee and our rich history,” Waukee Historical Society Board Member Terry Snyder said.
The June 1 ceremony began with a presentation by Snyder, herself. Mayor Peard then read a letter he wrote to the mayor of 2119 followed by a letter written and read by Senator Charles Schneider to the future senator of 2119. Both of these letters are to be included in a 2019 time capsule to be buried later this year.
“It's definitely a city on the move. Our quality of life is phenomenal and getting better all the time with the bike trails, new restaurants, and new Imax theater. We have low crime, great schools and still have a community spirit,” Mayor Peard said.
Following the presentations, the 50-year-old time capsule was removed from the ground and opened at the town gazebo for all to see. Although much of the contents were damaged or broken, there were some objects such as a Dallas County Newspaper article covering the centennial celebration and a centennial plate that could possibly be salvaged.
“We will try to dry out the stuff as much as possible and maybe we can see what was on some of the newspapers,” Snyder said, “We will also bring up the other capsule and either put the stuff in another capsule if it is good or we may even redo a 50 years one to be opened in 2069 as well as the 100 year one.”
Going forward, the Waukee Historical Society is working to fill a 2019 time capsule to be opened in the year 2119. As part of the new time capsule, school aged children were asked to participate in a contest to write a letter to the children of 2119 telling them what life is like today. The Historical Society will then choose four to six letters to include with the time capsule while the rest will be displayed in a future museum.
The Historical Society is also considering adding objects such as the progression of technology storage (a floppy disc to a thumb drive to an explanation of the cloud) along with a progression of music (vinyl records to 8 track tapes to cassette tapes to iPods) to the 2019 time capsule.
Those interested in submitting items for consideration can contact the Waukee Historical Society at firstname.lastname@example.org or through Facebook. Once objects are received a committee will consider which items to include in the time capsule to be buried later this year.