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Rindge 250th unearths mystery of missing coffin

  • A small group of people in Rindge are working to find the location of a small box - a time capsule full of razor blades and potentially other objects - buried 50 years ago during the 200th anniversary of the town's founding. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

  • A small group of people in Rindge are working to find the location of a small box - a time capsule full of razor blades and potentially other objects - buried 50 years ago during the 200th anniversary of the town's founding. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

  • A small group of people in Rindge are working to find the location of a small box - a time capsule full of razor blades and potentially other objects - buried 50 years ago during the 200th anniversary of the town's founding. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

  • A small group of people in Rindge are working to find the location of a small box - a time capsule full of razor blades and potentially other objects - buried 50 years ago during the 200th anniversary of the town's founding. Staff photo by Nicholas Handy—

  • Photos from the Rindge 200th anniversary celebration in 1968. Courtesy photos—

  • Photos from the Rindge 200th anniversary celebration in 1968. Courtesy photos—

  • Photos from the Rindge 200th anniversary celebration in 1968. Courtesy photos—



Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Saturday, November 03, 2018 1:6AM

The celebration of the 250th anniversary of Rindge’s founding has unearthed quite the mystery for the town.

During bicentennial celebrations fifty years ago, a small wooden box – deemed a coffin, as it was carried by pallbearers on a stretcher through town – containing razorblades was buried somewhere near the town’s meetinghouse.

Despite a few attempts at finding the box, including two separate exhumation ceremonies, the box has yet to be found.

“I was 10 when the razors were buried... I thought I remembered it well,” Rindge resident Karla MacLeod, one of a few people who has been working to find the razorblades.

MacLeod and others have spent much time on the meetinghouse lawn with metal detectors, hoping to find the appropriate spot. Coins, a horseshoe, and even a bicycle chain has been found in the search.

“If we find it at this point, it will be nice. I just think it will be interesting to see if there are some extra things in there,” MacLeod said.

The razors were buried as a part of the 200th anniversary celebrations, which issued permits to allow men to shave. MacLeod said men in town grew beards and threw away their razors in response to the humorousness permit. It was part fundraiser and part publicity for the 200th festivities.

When thinking back on the event, MacLeod recalls that about 20 to 25 razors –potentially a mix of straight razors and double-edged razor blades – were put in the box.

Rindge selectwoman Roberta Oeser, who served on the volunteer committee that organized events for the Rindge 250th celebrations this year, said there were attempts to use photographs and memories of those in town during the celebrations to triangulate the location of the buried box.

“I think it’s findable if it’s still in the ground,” Oeser said. “The problem is, it may have been dug up.”

On Wednesday, MacLeod used her metal detector in an area on the lawn, about 10 to 15 feet from the historic sign west of the meetinghouse – a potential new location to investigate further.

MacLeod registered a signal on her metal detector – a sign something was indeed in the suspected area – but digging might have to wait. MacLeod said there might be a ceremony or something planned just incase this is the right spot.

“It’s all of the above, a good mystery, exciting, and frustrating,” MacLeod said.

Nicholas Handy can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or nhandy@ledgertranscript.com. He is also on Twitter @nhandyMLT.