Updated: Sep 9, 2020

Few may know there is a time capsule inside the cornerstone of the South Haven Center for the Arts building—originally the Andrew Carnegie Library—built in 1905.

Architecturally, a cornerstone is the first stone laid in a building’s foundation, which serves as a reference from which to build up. Our cornerstone sits on the northeast corner of the building, and according to an article published in the South Haven Daily Tribune on Friday, October 6, 1905, the stone was swung into place at two o’clock on that day by project foreman O. M. Foster and the Reverend W. P. Law. According to the paper, Library Board President W. S. Bradley was delayed and didn’t arrive in time for the ceremony.

X Marks the Spot!

The 8" x 8" x 12" copper box contains what seems an eclectic collection of objects: copies of the Daily and Weekly South Haven Tribune, the Evening Post, and the Citizens Advocate; a copy of the library catalogue; and the calling cards of residents, including Liberty Hyde Bailey, Mrs. H. M. Abell, Ira Smith, E. G. Hill, Mrs. C. B. Crowell, and Reverend Law himself.

People came from far and wide on the Dunkley Williams R.R. Line, which ran from Chicago to Saugatuck, with stops in South Haven and Douglas (in those days Chicago was far!), and some placed their tickets in the time capsule. Tickets from travel on the Pere Marquette R. R. (Muskegon to Holland), and the Big Four R.R. (Benton Harbor to Warsaw, Indiana), lay alongside the Dunkley’s.

Click to see more cool advertisements from The Official Railway Guide: North American Freight Service Edition at Google Books.

Someone contributed a photo of the passenger steamer S.S. Eastland—known as “the Speed Queen of the Great Lakes”—famous for sinking while docked in the Chicago River on July 24, 1915 killing 884 passengers and crew. It was the largest loss of life from a shipwreck on the Great Lakes. The Michigan Steamship Company commissioned the excursion ship in 1902 and it was built by the Jenks Ship Building Company of Port Huron for tourist travel between Chicago and South Haven.

S.S. Eastland, Docked, c. 1911

If you’re inclined to learn more, here’s a link to an article on the Eastland from Smithsonian Magazine: The Eastland Disaster Killed More Passengers Than the Titanic and the Lusitania. Why Has It Been Forgotten? And Chicago Stories: The Eastland Disaster is quite fascinating, as well.

Financial matters may have also been on the minds of those watching the laying of the cornerstone that day. The box holds a Masonic keystone penny from the South Haven Chapter of the Royal Arch Masons, a Philippine ten cent piece, a Confederate five-dollar bill, a Mexican ten cent script, and a tax receipt from Kalamazoo County, dated 1836.

Masonic Keystone Penny. Pennies were manufactured for each lodge.

Last (and likely there is more), the time capsule contains a cannonball from the the Civil War battleground in Fort Sanders, Kentucky, and an arrest warrant dated 1858 for one Elan G. Cole, whereabouts unknown.

After the time capsule was sealed it was placed in the aperture of the cornerstone, and is still safe one hundred and fifteen years later.

by Nancy Albright

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Updated: Mar 26, 2020


Make art with South Haven Center for the Arts teaching artist Katrina Jones.

Ask a grown-up to make some strong coffee or tea for a fun art project. Coffee rings or soggy teabags make fun designs on paper that you can turn into fun critters by using your imagination.

Try dropping a teabag onto a piece of paper . . . SPLAT! . . . and let it sit there for a few minutes (to get darker) and then remove. Let it dry and create! Or while your puddle is still wet, blow on it with a straw.

Or, set a coffee cup in a saucer of coffee and then set it on a piece of paper. You can even wiggle it around a bit to make some different designs.

Use your imagination.

Here are examples of some critters made from coffee/tea stains, just done in pencil or a fine black marker. You can use colored pencils or pens or anything!

Share your creativity with us, post your Coffee and Tea critters on www.facebook.com/southhavenarts or send them too info@southhavenarts.org.

Katrina Jones, South Haven Center for the Arts teaching artist and artist member shared this art activity with you. Stay tuned for more! If you are an art center artist and have an activity to share, reach out to Kerry at info@southhavenarts.org.

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Updated: Aug 26, 2020

South Haven Center for the Arts need your help to get ready for the Frida Kahlo’s Garden Exhibition this summer by making Ojo de Dios (God’s Eyes) to hang from the ceiling in the beautiful second floor gallery. Ojos de Dios can be fascinatingly complex, yet simple ones are beautiful. All ages can enjoy making them. Sticks are easy to come by, but it does require you to have some string or yarn at home. For older children and adults, I would like to invite you to read some of the resources below and learn about the history and significance of the Ojo de Dios to pre-Hispanic cultures in Mexico. One reference says “when one makes a traditional Ojo de Dios, one is expressing a prayer that the ‘Eye of God’ will watch over them or the person they are making it for (oftentimes a child). The Ojo de Dios is also a physical representation of praying for health, fortune, and a long life.” We have provided some links for your research, but if you want to share with us the significance of the Ojo de Dios to you, your family, and your culture, we would welcome this!

We have also provided links to printable instructions and a video link, but again, there is so much information out there, so feel free to find your own instructions. These can be very simple, and they can be very complex. We do ask that they be around 6-8 inches, no bigger than 12 inches. You can use popsicle sticks, skewers, old pencils, sticks from outside, or anything for your base.

As in the photo from a town in Mexico below, feel free to attach a ribbon or a paper banner from the top with your Ojo de Dios that says your first name (if you want to be able to pick it up in August after the display is over, you can put contact information). We will have a box to start collecting these when we are open again in April. Make one or many.

Are you not in South Haven, Michigan or nearby, but want to make an Ojo De Dios to hang from our ceiling? Mail it to South Haven Center for the Arts, 600 Phoenix Street, South Haven, Michigan 49090. Unfortunately, we will not be able to mail an Ojo de Dios back.

Video how to’s

toucanBox – in English

Creactivate con MariEn Español

And More complex

Resources for cultural History and Significance of the Ojo De Dios


Ojo de Dios, Tribute to Nayarit Spiritualism

Lesson Plans to use with kids:




Also, do your own searches on youtube, Pinterest and google for Ojo de Dios and God’s eye tutorials – many ideas and patterns.

Frida Kahlo’s Garden upcoming exhibition at the South Haven Center for the Arts, learn more here: https://www.southhavenarts.org/frida-kahlo-s-garden

We look forward to seeing all your wonderful work! If you have questions or have additional resources to share contact us at info@southhavenarts.org. Also, please send us a photo of in progress or completed Ojo de Dios and we will share online.

Many thanks for your participation!

Kerry Hagy and the South Haven Center for the Arts

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