A rotary phone, a 45-rpm vinyl record of the Go-Go's "We Got the Beat" and polaroid pictures were just some of the items that were unearthed when a time capsule was recently opened at Tackett's Mill. The capsule was placed under the brick floor of the Old Mill with a plaque that read "Tackett's Mill, Inc., a subsidiary of Weaver Bros., Inc., buried this time capsule on March 29, 1985, to be opened on May 29, 2019, on the 50th anniversary of the founding of Lake Ridge. The contents of this time capsule are designed to tell future generations about life in Prince William County in the 1980s and were suggested by the children of Prince William County."
Members of the community, Occoquan District Supervisor Ruth Anderson and others gathered together on Wednesday for the opening of the glimpse into history.
The time capsule had some stuff in it that was strange to Aaron Ross. "I thought it was interesting seeing all of the old stuff in there, like the record and the rotary phone, which I'd never seen in my life," the 12-year-old said.
In addition to the phone, record and polaroid photos, a copy of "The Potomac News" newspaper, a program for the Prince William Pirates – the single A baseball team which preceded the Potomac Nationals by a couple of iterations, a pile of essays, a model of the Space Shuttle Discovery, a Volkswagen Beetle Matchbox car accompanied by a poem extolling commuters and a GI Joe Halloween costume were among the contents of the time capsule.
Brendan Biamon, was in fifth grade when he put his GI Joe Halloween Costume in the time capsule. He came from San Diego for the capsule's opening. "It's a pretty neat experience. How many times in your life do you get to see something like this? It's pretty cool. I'm glad to be here," said Biamon, now 44.
Charlene Currin was a fifth grader when she put the put a copy of the book "My Book of Bible Stories" in the time capsule. She brought her children to the opening. "It was nice to bring my children back and have the whole thing come full circle."
Chris Purdham was 13 when he put one of 19 essays in the time capsule. He said he found the inclusion of the phone interesting. "I think the telephone was the most profound thing in there – a rotary telephone, compared to what we have today? I'm sure they didn't envision the phones we have today," said Purdham, who grew up in Dale City and now lives in Stafford.
Purdham's essay talked about the almost-completed Potomac Mills Mall and predicted major growth in Prince William County.
Anderson said she was interested in what the time capsule represented. "It was exciting. 34 years doesn't seem like a horribly long time to me, but it is interesting how much has happened in 34 years. I'm so glad people had the forethought to create the time capsule. We're going to get copies of those essays. I know they'll be fun to read."
The contents of the time capsule will be on public display at Lakeside during the Tackett's Mill Summerfest between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 15, according to Nancy Kyme, the CFO, of Tackett's Mill Center, LLC, Wellstone Corporation.