A HIDDEN gem was found in the recent demolition of Target’s Mount Gambier store, with contractors surprised to unearth a time capsule.
Containing historical newspaper reports and documents associated with the site works between 1924 and 1973 were found within the glass capsule, which was discovered behind a 50-year-old foundation stone.
Mount Gambier Mayor Lynette Martin said council was “very excited” to receive the significant pieces of history from the site developers.
“We will discuss opening the time capsule to see exactly what it contains within the coming months,” Ms Martin said.
A question mark remains around a stone marked “Bienvenu”, which was also discovered during the demolition.
The word Bienvenu is known as the French word for welcome, leaving the community and council questioning its history.
“We do not know how the Bienvenu stone fits into the story,” Ms Martin said.
“We can only assume it may have come from a house that may have been on the site during the powerhouse demolition process in 1924.
City Council had previously negotiated an agreement with developers to preserve the power station foundation stone and reinstall it as part of the development on site.
The stone was salvaged when the electricity supply buildings were demolished and was incorporated into the Target building in 1973.
“The Spehr family is particularly keen to see this foundation stone preserved and no doubt are happy to learn that as part of the final approved site plans, it will be laid at the internal car park entry walkway,” Ms Martin said.
Work is continuing on the site, with the ALDI development foreshadowed to be completed before Christmas, with the Coles supermarket and associated speciality stores opening in 2020.