A time capsule opened Thursday that was sealed in 1925 showed similarities and differences between that time and today.
The capsule, in a copper box, was located behind a cornerstone prior to the recent demolition of the 1925 portion of the former Anson Middle School. It included a book which had information on the community and school district and a letter from the Marshalltown superintendent at the time, William Shirley, about the building project.
The letter was dated Dec. 30, 1925 and indicated the outcry from the community the school district received for its building project, even though a bond issue vote was passed. For being nearly 87 years old, the letter looked pristine.
T-R PHOTO BY ANDREW POTTER
Marshalltown School Board President Kay Beach, looks through a letter that was part of a copper box time capsule from 1925 that was opened Thursday. At right, is Rick Simpson, director of buildings and grounds with the school district. The time capsule was located during the demolition of the former Anson Middle School.
The letter indicated many in the community were complaining that a school building with a gymnasium was an "extravagance" for what was called a "temporary fad."
The box was opened Thursday by Marshalltown School Board President Kay Beach as school staff and community members looked on. The letter also indicated that a $400,000 bond issue was approved in 1925, much of which was to pay for work on the old high school and some at the Anson site.
"They wanted everybody to understand, forever, why they spent that much money on a building and how important it was," Beach said.
Rick Simpson, director of buildings and grounds with the school district, said the demolition contractor for the school was notified to check the cornerstone before going ahead with the full demolition because time capsules are often found.
"It's always fun to look back and see what people were thinking when they were building their project," Simpson said.
The contents of the time capsule will be on display soon at the Marshalltown Public Library. There are plans to put new items in a time capsule for the new project at the site, and those with ideas can contact Jason Staker at the school district at 641-754-1000 or email@example.com.
Simpson also said those who want bricks from the former Anson Middle School can stop by the site, and the contractor has been courteous to those wanting a piece of the former school.