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 Tulsa pops open car time capsule.

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PostSubject: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Fri Jun 15, 2007 7:02 pm

Curious hundreds watch unearthing of 1957 Plymouth Belvedere in Tulsa, Okla.





TULSA, Oklahoma (AP) - Hundreds watched Friday as a crane lifted a muddy package from a hole in Tulsa's courthouse lawn: a 1957 Belvedere buried to celebrate Oklahoma's 50 years of statehood.
The wrapped car _ a gold and white two-door _ appeared brown and red as it came out of the hole, but








it was unclear whether the color represented dirt or rust. A bit of shiny chrome was visible on the bumper.
The car spent the last half-century covered in three layers of protective material and encased in a 12-by-20-foot (3.6-by-6.1-meter) concrete vault, supposedly tough enough to withstand a nuclear attack.
But event officials already had to pump out several feet of water from its crypt.
The car was placed on a flatbed so it could be unwrapped, spruced up and officially unveiled Friday evening at the Tulsa Convention Center. Spectators packed the streets to glimpse its journey.
Whether the will start was unknown. Those who gathered to watch it being pulled out of the ground did not seem to care.
«I just need to see it,» said Marc Montague of Auckland, among the couple hundred spectators amassed at the downtown site Thursday afternoon. «I've been waiting 15 years for this.
Also buried with it were 10 gallons (37.9 liters) of gasoline _ in case internal combustion engines became obsolete by 2007 _ a case of beer, and the contents of a typical woman's handbag placed in the glove compartment: 14 bobby pins, a bottle of tranquilizers, a lipstick, a pack of gum, tissues, a pack of cigarettes, matches and $2.43.
There was also a spool of microfilm that recorded the entries of a contest to determine who would win the car: the person who guessed the closest of what Tulsa's population would be in 2007 _ 382,457 _ would win.
That person, or his or her heirs, will get the car and a $100 savings account, worth about $1,200 (¤901) today with interest.
Thursday afternoon, legendary hot rod builder Boyd Coddington inspected the vault and what he was able to see of the car with his crew.
The task will fall to Coddington, host of the TV series American Hot Rod on The Learning Channel, to try to start the thing up at a ceremony Thursday evening. Tens of thousands of tickets were sold for the event.
«We're optimistic,» Coddington said. «I'm really concerned about the rust on the bottom of the car.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Fri Jun 15, 2007 7:04 pm

I'm watching live, they are about to reveal the car, show what shape it's in.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Fri Jun 15, 2007 7:09 pm

I don't know, this is big news around here, it did make the national news too. They buried this sucker 50 years ago, and they took it out today. They said the pit had a lot of water in it, so everyone is fregin out.

They got Boyd Coddington from American Hotrod to unveal it, but they are dragging it on and on. DAMN.

The sound sucks, this local station is ****ing this up.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Fri Jun 15, 2007 7:15 pm

Man, it got tanked. The car was all muddy and ****y, and wet and crappy looking.

The engine is gone, they can't even start it. Too much rust and muck and water in it. Pathetic!!!

Man, that sucked. They put it in a concrete deal in 57, put it in special wrap, and loaded it with stuff. But they didn't do a good job, it got all wet and nasty and gone.

Oh well.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Fri Jun 15, 2007 8:00 pm

The Associated Press


TULSA, Okla. — A Plymouth Belvedere that was put in a crypt beneath the courthouse lawn in 1957 to celebrate Oklahoma’s 50 years of statehood is set to see the light of day, in time for the centennial. But it might be a little rusty.
Workers unearthing the now-classic two-door hardtop found the car sitting in water in a concrete vault that had been touted as strong enough to withstand a nuclear attack.
Still, an organizer was optimistic that the car might be “90 percent solid” because it had been wrapped in a rust inhibitor, a special coating and a huge plastic bag.
“There will be some rust here and there,” said Art Couch, who is leading the unearthing project. “Maybe it’s not as bad as we think.”
The time capsule was briefly opened Wednesday so hazardous materials crews could inspect the contents, which also included 10 gallons of gasoline and 5 quarts of motor oil that had been placed inside in case internal combustion engines became obsolete by 2007.
Excavators found water halfway up on the car’s fenders and evidence that water could have been to the top of the vault at one point, said Art Couch, who is heading up the unearthing project.
The first news of the water crushed event organizers, with some wiping away tears as heavy rain fell.
“It was very disappointing,” said event producer Kelly McElroy. “I think we probably anticipated there would be some water; after 50 years you don’t know what you’re going to get.”

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Fri Jun 15, 2007 8:02 pm

It's like they buried it in the sea for 50 years. The mud, the gunk, the rust, the pit. I bet it stunk like old feet and sewer.


AAAAAAAAAAAAAAGHHHHHHGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG!!!!!

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Fri Jun 15, 2007 10:03 pm

Sad thing is, you could go to a junk yard and find one that sat out in the wind and rain for 50 years and it would be in better shape. This thing sat in water and gunk for 50 years.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Fri Jun 15, 2007 10:15 pm

awww seems like such a let down

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Sat Jun 16, 2007 9:58 am

I would say so. Bright side is the car is still there, they can restore it, but everyone was expecting a pristine shiny car from 1957.

50 years in the making, and whoever set it up dropped the ball. Which is sad, cause they tried. They put it in a concrete bunker, they wrapped it in special made wrap just for the project.

They made an effort, but it tanked. The Tulsa people in charge of the event were let down, but they made the best of it. I'm just glad I watched it on T.V. and didn't pay big bucks to fly here like folks did from Europe and Austrailia. Those people got ripped off!!!


Boyd Coddington, who has that Hot Rod show on Discovery Channel, was going to try and start it when they unveiled it, but you had to see the car, the engine was a sickening rust mud pit. You know he was crapped out about the deal. Just sad is the word.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Sat Jun 16, 2007 10:00 am

Time is kinder to Tulsa than to buried auto

Rusted metal and fond memories are what's left from '57 publicity stunt.
By Miguel Bustillo, Times Staff Writer
June 16, 2007

TULSA, OKLA. — Wide-eyed dreamers from throughout the world came here Friday to see the gleaming gold-and-white Plymouth Belvedere — buried decades ago in a time capsule as a publicity stunt.

What they saw was a waterlogged mass of metal with tailfins, shrouded in a patina of rust.

Back in 1957, when Oklahoma was celebrating its 50th anniversary, all the attention was going to Oklahoma City, and Tulsans were feeling neglected. Oklahoma City's celebration had Mickey Rooney. Tulsa's had a beard-growing contest.

Tulsa desperately needed something — anything — to grab the spotlight, and a New York publicist pushing the Belvedere told civic leaders he had an idea:

The city would bury a brand-new automobile in a concrete crypt billed as strong enough to withstand a nuclear bomb. Tulsans would predict the population of their city in 2007, the state's centennial. The car would be dug up and given away to the person with the closest guess — or their heir.

The stunt worked. Life magazine ran a photo of three girls sitting on the hood of the soon-to-be entombed Belvedere, and newspapers in 1957 were filled with breathless stories about the unusual time capsule being buried beneath the lawn of the Tulsa County courthouse. Tulsa was finally on the map.

Alas, the concrete block was not so impregnable. When Hazmat crews cracked it open Wednesday, they discovered nearly 2,000 gallons of standing water. Devastated, Sharon King Davis, Tulsarama's chief organizer, cried on the spot.

"We've got our work cut out for us," Boyd Coddington, car builder and star of the "American Hot Rod" TV show, said Friday when prompted to grab a microphone and offer an assessment of the fabled "Ms. Belvedere." "It don't look good."

Still, many gray-haired Tulsans and classic-car aficionados who traveled from as far as Norway for the unearthing felt satisfied, because what mattered to them were the memories.

And those came up intact.

"In my mind's eye, I was seeing a certain thing," said James Doyle, 65, one of the few to drive the car when he took it for a spin around a racetrack in 1957. He was 15 and did not have a license. "But you have to accept the reality that it might look different than what you had hoped. We all changed too."

Some hoped the Belvedere would start up and drive into the sunset on nearby Route 66. Others old enough to remember the day it was buried wanted to see the crypt's contents just as they had left them, including 10 gallons of leaded gasoline, five quarts of motor oil and a case of Schlitz beer.

In the car's glove compartment were the contents from a woman's purse: bobby pins, a bottle of tranquilizers and a pack of cigarettes. There was also a photograph of a smiling 20-year-old bride.

That bride didn't smile for long: The marriage lasted less than two years, and she was left to raise twin daughters on her own.

But Nancy Lawson, now 70 and remarried, said she wanted to see that picture again because it reminded her of her father, a Tulsa publicist who hustled to get it in the glove compartment.

"He's always been my hero," Lawson said of her father, who died in 1978. "And this was one of his proudest accomplishments."

Thousands gathered in grandstands Friday despite thunderstorms and gloomy skies to watch a monstrous crane lift the Belvedere out of the ground. Speakers boomed with Elvis Presley's "Teddy Bear," Domenico Modugno's "Volare" and other hits from the 1950s. Miss Tulsarama from 1957 had died, but her daughters came, carrying her crown.

When the crane spun the car before the crowd, some gasped as its corroded tailfins became visible through the tears in a protective tarp.

Their fears were confirmed Friday evening at the Tulsa Convention Center, when organizers lifted a curtain: The car's rear end was dragging the ground, and its once-glossy finish was encrusted with barnacles of oxidation. The upholstery was eaten away, and only the metal base of the seats remained. The engine was crumbling, but a member of Coddington's crew was able to take out the dipstick, drawing a cheer from the crowd.

"It's not often you hear about a classic automobile being buried," said car collector John Cooper, 53, who had flown in from Adelaide, Australia.

"There are some amazing people who could make it look like new. Personally, I wish it would remain this way. It's history."

As to who gets the car, Deloitte & Touche LLP, the accounting firm that tabulates the Grammy Award votes, will select the winning entry and help find the person — or their closest living relative — who guessed Tulsa's population of 382,457. How long that will take is anyone's guess, since organizers were still searching the car for the microfilm that was supposed to contain the entries.

They were also looking for the keys.

Despite its condition, the Belvedere is still worth a mint. Collectors eager to obtain a piece of Americana are rumored to be offering hundreds of thousands of dollars for it.

Gary Trent, 60, was 10 when he saw the grown-ups burying the Belvedere. He wanted a part of history too, so he picked up a shell casing and threw it into the tomb when no one was looking.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Mon Jun 18, 2007 11:03 am

Buried since 1957 the car is exposed to a Tulsa of the future... where it was advance technologically a whopping 14 years.

Tee-hee.

-HECK!

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Tue Jun 19, 2007 5:20 pm






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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Tue Jun 19, 2007 8:01 pm

Seriously, after 50 years... that's what I'd expect the car to look like.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Tue Jun 19, 2007 8:06 pm

Yeah, but they put in a concrete bunker that was air tight (yeah, right) and wrapped it in a plastic deal they had made just for that, in case moisture got into the vault.

A lot of people thought it would be in mint condition, like it was in a garage all these years. They had Boyd there to try and start it. They thought it was going to be in that good of shape. When they saw the pit was full of water, they knew the jig was up, but they didn't spread the news till after the car was unvieled. It was a bit of shock how nasty that turd turned out to be.

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PostSubject: Re: Tulsa pops open car time capsule.   Tue Jun 19, 2007 8:26 pm

You'd still need a dehumidifying unit of some sort in there... moisture's gonna seep in no matter how air tight they think the thing is.

Well, hope they can restore the car.

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