The student news site of Francis W. Parker School

The Parker Weekly

The student news site of Francis W. Parker School

The Parker Weekly

The student news site of Francis W. Parker School

The Parker Weekly

The Past, the Present, and the Future

What happened to Parker’s time capsule that was sealed in 1998?
Students%2C+faculty+and+community+members+gather+in+the+Parker+courtyard+to+bury+the+time+capsule.
Photo credit: fwparkerarchives.org
Students, faculty and community members gather in the Parker courtyard to bury the time capsule.

What do you imagine Parker will look like 25 years from now? And if you had to show the students and faculty of the future what Parker is like now, what would you bring? This is what the Parker community had to think about when they created a time capsule included in the Jabodon Hall construction and ceremonially sealed by then-Associate Principal Dan Frank on September 12, 1998.

The contents of the Time Capsule included: a “Read First” kit containing documents, 1998 material, and predictions for 2023, The Wall Street Journal (4/8/98), Popular Science Magazine (4/98), Game Informer Magazine (4/98), Pulse Magazine (4/98), two photos of both ‘97-’98 2nd grade classes with quilts made for the Francis W. Parker ‘98 auction, student art and writings, SK materials and documents, a campaign for Parker video, materials, publications, speeches, and photos from the building dedication ceremonies (9/11-12/98). 

The Time Capsule was set to be opened in 2023, but, since no one remembered it, that did not happen. The location of the Time Capsule is currently unknown, but Joe Simonetti, the Director of Operations at Parker is working on finding it. He first looked in the wall soffit behind the cornerstone in Room 154 which is part of Jabodon Hall. Although Simonetti could not find anything at first, he believes that it is further back in the wall and plans to look again on Wednesday, February 7. The search for the missing time capsule is now underway.

“If we were to open the time capsule, we would likely have a ceremony that would outline the history of when Jabodon Hall was built,” Principal Dan Frank said.“We would talk about each item we discovered and later put the items on display for people to look at. We would also give “the Weekly” credit for having inquired about the time capsule and reminding us of the 2023 date.”

This was not the first time that the Parker community created a time capsule. In 1984, a ceramic time capsule was made by art teacher Jo Roof containing “the Record,” “the Weekly,” audiotapes of students performing music, students and faculty predictions and wishes about the future, and other materials. This capsule was buried in the courtyard during a ceremonial MX and was opened in 2001, the year of Parker’s 100th anniversary.

The idea of a time capsule does not have to end here. “Making a new time capsule would be fun,” Frank said. “Perhaps we can ask students and teachers to write about what they think Parker will be like in 20 years from now when the 2024 time capsule is opened in 2044. It would be interesting to share those ideas now, let alone have students in 2044 discover what we thought back in 2024.” 

“If I had to make a time capsule, I would put a list of all the clubs and organizations that we have at Parker from this year, one of my chemistry weekly individual quizzes, and a copy of ‘Phaedrus,’” senior Kate Chavez said. 

“I would put in Mr. Mahany,” senior Jackson Mendeloff said. “Maybe some Mountain Dew as well.”

“I would put in an Iphone and one of my lovable flair pens to see if those still exist,” 8th grade English teacher David Fuder said.

The future of Parker in 20 years remains a mystery, but a time capsule would be a way to share a sliver of our current situation with future generations. 

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About the Contributor
Saroya Ornelas Pagnucci, Online Editor
Saroya Ornelas Pagnucci is a senior and one of the Online Editors for “The Weekly.” When she is not managing the Weekly's website or writing informative articles for the Parker community, she is likely practicing cello, reading, playing volleyball, or at dance practice. Outside of "The Weekly," she is one of the heads of the Organization of Latin American Students (OLAS), the Director of Cross-Grade Communication for Student Government, a Berkowitz Committee Head, and also loves Model U.N, Debate Club, and FWPMUN!