Cleveland time capsule includes artifacts from Ukrainian community
by Andrew Fedynsky
CLEVELAND - A hundred years from now, when the city of Cleveland celebrates its 300th birthday in 2096, the Ukrainian community will be represented regardless if there will be any actual Ukrainians living in Cleveland.
This was assured when Ivanna Shkarupa, representing the Ukrainian National Women's League of North America (UNWLA) and Martha Savchak Kraus, representing the Ukrainian Museum-Archives, participated in a time capsule sealing ceremony on December 18, 1996, at the Western Reserve Historical Society. This culminated a year of events associated with Cleveland's Bicentennial.
Working through the Ukrainian Museum-Archives, the Bicentennial Time Capsule Committee, organized by Women Celebrating the Bicentennial, asked the Ukrainian community to prepare a representative contribution of materials to be included in the time capsule that was sealed for 100 years until the next centennial of Cleveland in 2096.
To make sure that future Clevelanders would appreciate the contributions of the Ukrainian community to the civic life of the city, the Cleveland Chapter of the UNWLA assembled an envelope with 12 items, among them a Ukrainian flag, a photograph of the Lesia Ukrainka monument in Cleveland, memorabilia related to the commemoration of the Chornobyl catastrophe, booklets on Ukrainian crafts and a pysanka created by Tanya Osadca.
A total of 110 organizations and individuals contributed items for inclusion in the Bicentennial Time Capsule. The Cleveland Plain Dealer, which devoted a full page to a story about the time capsule, selected the Ukrainian submission as one of a handful of focus features. Others included the Jewish community and the Cleveland participants in the U.N. Fourth World Conference on Women held in China. The focus feature on the Ukrainian contribution had a full-color photograph of the pysanka that Cleveland-ers will be admiring 100 years from now.
For the Ukrainian Museum-Archives, the ceremony capped a six-month celebration of Ukrainian life in Cleveland. The museum currently features an exhibit of photographs, posters, crafts, badges, fliers and other memorabilia documenting the history of the Ukrainian community in Cleveland over 100 years. The Ukrainian Museum-Archives was one of the sites chosen for the Cleveland Bicentennial Caravan that was held last year in September.
As for whether or not there will be any Ukrainian Americans in Cleveland 100 years from now to participate in the opening of the Bicentennial Time Capsule, one can only hope. The Ukrainian National Women's League of North America and the Ukrainian Museum-Archives kept faith with the generations of Ukrainian Americans who preceded them in creating a vibrant community. Both organizations have ambitious plans that include involvement of young people to ensure that the chain that was forged 100 years ago, when the first Ukrainian immigrants came to Cleveland remains intact into the next generation. Beyond that, all depends on the seeds the community plants today.
Copyright © The Ukrainian Weekly, February 23, 1997, No. 8, Vol. LXV
| Home Page |