Historic relic found in Sheridan library - KOTA Territory News

Historic relic found in Sheridan library


A piece of centuries old U.S. history was found last fall in a small box in the backroom of the Sheridan Fulmer Library's Wyoming Room.

"The U.S.S. Constitution was christened in 1797 I believe and then it served in the War of 1812," said Wyoming Room manager Judy Slack.

A piece of the wooden ship, nicknamed "Old Iron Sides," was in a more than 120 years old time capsule, along with other local historical items from 1891.

"Church documents, and lists of names of all of the county officials, the state officials," said Slack.

And a piece of an apple tree from Appomattox, the site of the Civil War surrender.

Local historians had hoped to find the capsule, which was originally buried under the Central School in 1891, once the local masons learned about their group's involvement in the school's dedication all those years ago.

"They dedicated the cornerstone of the first school in Sheridan. I was able to look up the Grand Lodge records and I found out what was in that time capsule," said past Masonic Grandmaster Jimmy John Dunlap.

"We know that the building was torn down around 1930 and at that point in time it probably was taken by someone and kept it in safe keeping," said Slack.

No matter the method, a piece of early U.S. history sits in Sheridan.

"That really piqued our interest. I thought, 'My gosh,' because I visited Old Iron Sides in Boston.

And who knows what else…

"This room is sort of like the fifth dimension. You never know what's going to come in the door. You never know what you're going to find," said Slack.

Slack says a display of the time capsule's contents will get set up within a month in the library.

And local Masons will create a new time capsule with a record of the old one for the new Coffeen Elementary School when it is dedicated in August.

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