Self-serving: The 'Hook' goes into time capsule

In 50 years, although print media may well be a thing of the past, one local paper will be around when the time capsule stored at the Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society gets popped open in 2062.

Three issues of the HookYear in Review: The Best and Worst of 2012, and the 2011 Year in Review– were sealed away on December 23, along with the Hook Book, a photo-rich romp through local history.

The gathering in front of the Historical Society was the finale to a year of celebrating Charlottesville's 250th birthday, and the capsule is laden with souvenirs from the Celebrate250 effort. These include a lapel pin (will those still adorn every banker's chest in 50 years?), a Christmas ornament, and a commemorative glass mug and wine glass.

Albemarle County has its own lapel pin encapsulated, and a UVA keychain and mug will be preserved for future generations. A city map, the Charlottesville 2012 phone book, city budget, and comprehensive plan also made it into the box, along with yearbooks from Charlottesville High, Buford Middle, and Walker Upper Elementary, whose current students– unlike this reporter– may still be strolling the planet when the capsule is opened.

The residents of the future will get glimpses of the Charlottesville of 2012 in letters from public officials, such as Senator Mark Warner and Mayor Satyendra Huja, the city's first mayor to be born in India.

"It is a great and beautiful community, ranked one of the best places to live in America," writes Huja. "It has a diverse population, which is one of its strengths. It is a historic but very progressive city, and home to the University of Virginia."

City Councilor Dede Smith says she suggested including the Hook's Year in Review. "It seems like an obvious thing," she says. "It'll be interesting to see what kind of issues we had, and they'll get that from the Hook."

Smith also says she suggested CD samplers from 106.1 The Corner radio station for a taste of the music of 2012– even though CDs, too, are endangered media.

The latest time capsule will hopefully triumph from the mistakes surrounding the 1962 capsule, whose location vexed officials for months and when found, its contents turned out to be a water-logged mush bin.

This one will be stored indoors– inside the Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society.

"It's huge," says photographer Bill Emory. "It's more like a time cube."

Emory signed a guest book that goes into the capsule, urging citizens of the future to plant more trees. And he noted the presence at the recent ceremony of one person, a celebrated photographer, who was also present to document the 1962 time capsule burial.

"I thought it was kind of cool," says Emory, "that Ed Roseberry was there with his camera."