Step back in time to 2000 with these items "of the time" from a 1999 New Year's party that definitely left its mark.

At the end of the second millennium, in 1999, a group of friends and families in Sligo packed a box full of items away in the attic and this New Years' Eve they cracked open the treasure trove. What they placed inside was both nostalgic, brilliant and poignant. 

Art McCarrick posted his story on Twitter, on New Years' Eve 2019, as he and his family prepared to crack open the box they had sealed shut 20 years ago and hidden away in their family home's attic in Cloonacool, County Sligo.

He posted "This was put in our attic 20 years ago after a millennium party and it’s getting opened tonight! #timecapsule".

Of course, after 20 years in the attic, the key to the lock had been lost but that didn't phase them. Out came the trusty saw. 

First problem, the key for the lock has been lost. This is no longer a problem #timecapsule pic.twitter.com/h3eHM6khoZ

— Art McCarrick (@artmccarrick) December 31, 2019

Speaking to IrishCentral McCarrick explained that around 2000 there was lots of chatter about creating time capsules for the millennium. Living in rural Sligo, it was usual for friends and families to band together for parties in each other's houses and on New Years' Eve 1999, it was the McCarrick Clan's turn.

McCarrick told IrishCentral "That was the night we filled most of the capsule (photos and newspapers were added a day later) so that’s how the capsule ended up in our attic. But it was put away with the intention of opening it in 20 years and that’s what we did."

He said "It was a normal New Year's party with the neighbors, 31 people were there and they all signed a sheet of paper which was included in the capsule. All are still alive apart from one."

A list of everyone at the McCarrick party, in 1999.

A list of everyone at the McCarrick party, in 1999.

What was included in the time capsule was well-considered but not limited. McCarrick said the only criteria was that the items be "of the time". 

"Newspapers were included with a local (Sligo Champion), national (Irish Independent), global, (The Times) and a specialized paper (The Irish Farmers Journal) all put in there," he told IrishCentral. 

The first newspapers of 2000.

The first newspapers of 2000.

"We put in one of each coin of the Irish Punt as it was to soon be phased out. A bottle of poitín was put in, a few receipts from people’s Christmas shopping, a car tax disc, a scratch card, a few photos from the night and each child that was as the party was given a sheet to feel out with questions like name, age, favorite singer, your hero, what you’d like to be when you grow up, what do you think will be the latest gadget in 2020, etc... A neighbor also put in the pair of tights she was wearing!"

The gang's all here!

The gang's all here!

After 20 years, it's little wonder that some of the items included in the time capsule were a bit of a surprise. McCarrick said, "All we could remember that was in there for certain was the newspapers, the tights, and the poitín, so everything else was a surprise!"

Christmas shopping receipts and tax insurance discs.

Christmas shopping receipts and tax insurance discs.

Guess what happened to that 20-year-old bottle of poitín (Irish moonshine) made by one of McCarrick's neighbors. They drank it! 

McCarrick's said it was "Strong, but drinkable."

Yup! They drank the 20-year-old poitin.

Yup! They drank the 20-year-old poitin.

Looking ahead to the future McCarrick said his Sligo crew have discussed keeping the tradition going and adding to the collection which would then be opened again in 2040. 

Using the same consideration as they used in 2020, choosing items "of the time", McCarrick had some great ideas about what they might include. 

"We’ll put in a few papers as they might be a thing of the past in another 20 years along with petrol, diesel, coal, and peat briquette receipts. Those are all things that will change or vanish in the next 20 years. And we’ll include a few other bits and bobs, the price of a pint, that kind of thing.

"But the beauty of it is is that anyone can do this at any time. I was amazed at all the replies to my tweet saying “I wish I had done this”, there’s nothing stopping anyone from doing it."

What do you think? What would you include in your 2040 time capsule that would represent an aspect of our here and now? Let us know in the comments section below. 

Read more: Six-year-old Irish girl explains why she should be allowed to the pub

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