In an effort to determine the historical significance, appropriate care, storage and display of the items discovered in the 1912 Mount Pulaski High School Time Capsule, Superintendent Fred Lamkey visited the Illinois State Museum and Abraham Lincoln Libraries. Items in the time capsule included:
Original Copies of:
December 22, 1911 Mt. Pulaski Weekly News
February 28, 1912 The Mt. Pulaski Times
October 16, 1912 The Mt. Pulaski Times
October 18, 1912 Mt. Pulaski Weekly News
Copies of the Original:
April 15, 1865 The New York Herald
August 30, 1877 The Mt. Pulaski Citizen *
*The 1877 Mt. Pulaski Citizen may also be an original piece, but it could not be initially determined.
Other Items include:
Mt. Pulaski Township High School District Ticket
Bankbook from The Bank of Scroggin and Son
Ticket for Democratic Candidate for Coroner William Ryan
TWO FAMCVS CARRIGAS AND ONLY VNKNOWN document
4 Unidentified Coins
Bonnie Parr of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Conservators Lab said “the newspapers are in exceptional shape for their age and storage conditions” in conversation with Mr. Lamkey. She felt that with care, time and patience that these documents could be conserved and viewed by the public through limited access. The district ticket and coroner’s ticket were in good condition as well and the coins need restorative cleaning, but all other paper items were greatly deteriorated with little hope for doing more than preserving them in their current condition.
The next step in the process is to clean, restore, properly store and display the materials on a limited basis. Because of the items age, it will be necessary to limit their contact with UV lighting. This process is very time consuming and delicate work. Ms. Parr volunteered to train individuals in the process to assure the documents are cared for. Because of short staffing and a backlog of projects, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library is unable to participate in the restoration of the time capsule items.
The school district is seeking qualified volunteers to be trained in the cleaning and restoration of the newspapers, election tickets and coins. Volunteers for this opportunity should contact Mr. Lamkey for consideration. Experience and knowledge in restoration is preferred.
Below are pictures of each item in the capsule for public view: