O’Neill Centennial Time Capsule from 1974 Opened Sunday June 2, 2024 Contents Revealed and Plans Underway for 150 Year Time Capsule


Workers in the hole where the time capsule was buried.
The time capsule was surrounded on all sides by a cement vault
The workers had to try to slide the capsule without getting hold of anything
Coming out of the ground
Time capsule, all copper, taken out of the ground.
O’Neill Mayor Scott Menish uses sheet metal cutouts to open the capsule.
Natalie Butterfield reads from the first page of the O’Neill History Book that was in the capsule.
O’Neill Mayor Scott Menish pulls items out of the time capsule with narration from Natalie Butterfield about each item that was in there.
Time Capsule (right) with contents in storage bag. They will later be displayed at the Holt County Historical Society in downtown O’Neill.
Time Capsule hole at the base of the bell on the Holt County Courthouse lawn.
The crew that unearthed the Time Capsule, Chuck Zegers (standing left), Floyd Richter (standing right), Phil Butterfield (holding the Time Capsule) and Mayor O’Neill Scott Menish (kneeling right)
Marker that covered the hole where the Time Capsule had been for the last 50 years. It was donated by Duane Gray

On Sunday, June 2, 2024, a nice crowd gathered on the lawn of the Holt County Courthouse in O’Neill, Nebraska to unearth a time capsule buried on June 2, 1974, celebrating the City of O’Neill’s Centennial.

50 years of underground storage in an airtight copper container preserved all the items that were inside the capsule. Some of the items were the Centennial Proclamation from then-Nebraska Governor James Exon, O’Neill Centennial items such as O’Neill history books, buttons, and the Time Capsule shareholder list. There were American flags, Irish flags, O’Neill city flags and many other pieces of memorabilia. These items will soon be on display at the Holt County Historical Society in downtown O’Neill.

As we celebrate O’Neill’s 150th year, there are plans to bury a Sesquicentennial time capsule this year, and the Holt County Historical Society wants anyone who called O’Neill home to help find items to put in the 150 years. The time capsule. If you have ideas or O’Neill articles that may be of interest, contact the Holt County Historical Society or contact Natalie Butterfield. Here is the contact information:
Email: [email protected]
Mailing Address: Holt County Historical Society, 401 E Douglas, ONeill, NE 68763
Phone: Natalie Butterfield 402-336-8221

You can also submit suggestions and visit the Holt County Historical Society Museum at 401 East Douglas in downtown O’Neill when it is open during Summerfest on Saturday, July 20, 2024.