Current students gave a “drumroll” with their feet as Principal Mark Merriman revealed each item, and former students looked on as they remembered their time at Fall Branch 25 years ago.
Water damage blighted some of the items that had been locked away, but others like a perfect attendance list and a copy of the deed to the building remained intact.
Crystal Myers remembers being in eighth grade and donating the shirt used in the capsule. Monday morning was kind of like a reunion for many of the former students in attendance, she noted.
“It’s been really cool to see all the stuff that we put in there,” she said.
Not only did assistant Director of Washington County Schools Susan Kiernan attend Fall Branch School — she served as assistant principal and then principal of the school for nine years, including the day that the capsule was buried.
Kiernan read the short message she wrote for the capsule 25 years ago, and pored over every item that came out of the capsule.
“It’s very humbling that 25 years have passed, and that has been the biggest eye opener for me, it’s gone by very quickly,” Kiernan said. “I want (the students) to cherish every day, every year, because it goes by so quickly.
“It was just a highlight of my professional life. There are great memories here, and this brought back so many of those memories today.”
To carry on the tradition, teachers and staff at the school pulled together to bury a new capsule, one complete with current newspapers, pamphlets for the school’s special events, a jump drive filled with photos, a yearbook signed by all the teachers, a school shirt and, of course, Pokemon cards.
This time, the capsule bears the signatures of all the students in the school on the edges, and will wait to be opened until 2043.
“It’s just a piece of our local history, it’s something that’s important because, really, the students need to know where the school came from, the history of it, and the fact (the school community) has been around for 175 years,” he said.
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