Time capsule to be opened in bicentennial

Published 5:00 am Friday, April 17, 2009

A time capsule preserving several items from last year’ssesquicentennial activities was buried in Railroad Park Thursday,guaranteeing the Brookhavenites of 2058 a look at the city’syearlong 150th birthday celebration that came to an end withyesterday’s event.

A small group of city and county leaders and interested citizensgathered around the Foster Smith Log Cabin for the morningceremony, all of whom were pleased to see a snapshot of Brookhavenpreserved in the three-foot pipe.

“You have to know what the past was to know what the futureholds,” said Ron Lumpkin, of Jayess, who ventured out of TrustmarkNational Bank to witness the ceremony.

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Trustmark Bank Supervisor Brenda Henderson said she wasparticularly excited about the time capsule’s burial because the2008 Newcomer Magazine – one of the publications encased in thecapsule – contains her pictures.

“Maybe my great-great grandkids will be able to see it,” shesaid.

Brookhaven Mayor Bob Massengill said last year’s 150-yearcelebration was a special time for the city’s residents, andpreserving that time for the next generation is an important stepto writing the history of the city.

“Some of us won’t be here in 2058, and it will be important forpeople to see what was happening in this community,” he said. “Ihope they say Brookhaven is now, as it was then, a great place tolive and raise a family.”

Sesquicentennial Steering Committee Chairwoman Rita Rich saidshe hopes Brookhavenites in 2058 show enthusiasm for theirbicentennial celebration and perhaps use the buried informationfrom 2008 to help them plan and execute their own anniversaryactivities.

Rich hopes most of all the people and activities of 2008 live onthrough the time capsule. Without a written history to pass on,things can be forgotten, she said.

“I would ask people who lived through the centennial (in 1959),and they couldn’t remember (the activities),” she said. “It’s easyto forget. I think it’s very important that we preserve ourhistory.”

Rich echoed Lumpkin’s take on the time capsule, saying that agood knowledge of the past is required when planning for thefuture.

“You can see over the years the changes that have occurred inBrookhaven, and I think it’s been for the best,” she said.

Last year’s sesquicentennial celebration is now officially over,but Rich isn’t quite so sure she and the other planners can call itquits so easily.

“We’ll probably have another little meeting one day, because weloved it,” she said.