NORFOLK, Va. — Samantha Miller was shocked and amazed when she opened up a black plastic case on Oct. 19 on the bank of the Elizabeth River in the 5000 block of Mayflower Road in Norfolk and found an electric guitar inside.
The guitar is red, has lots of corrosion, a neck that’s in multiple pieces, and strings that aren’t fully attached.
The case, with a blue velvet lining, appeared to be in one piece.
“I thought it would’ve sank. It’s heavy," Miller said.
Miller was working on a project in the 5000 block of Mayflower Rd. for the Elizabeth River Project when she made the discovery.
“Coming to work on a normal day and I drove up and saw a case that clearly had washed up over the bulkhead. I was curious what washed up and what I had found," said Miller.
This is not the first unusual item that has been found along the river.
“(At) one site, we had a bunch of bricks. A lot of them were stamped with ‘Ohio’ on them, which I just thought was really interesting because we’re down here in Virginia and these are bricks from Ohio it appeared. I actually took one home and that’s one my project things that I have. Another site, we found lots of glass bottles, like medicine bottles, that were aged from, probably, the 1930s," Miller explained.
All of this, a reminder to be careful what gets into the river.
“When the Elizabeth River project started, the river was considered dead. We have done a good job to get it back to where it needs to be. We now have dolphins in the water and other animals. I’ve seen a horseshoe crab out here which is one of the coolest things I’ve seen," Miller said. "So yeah, I think it’s important to get the river clean and do everything we can do and it starts with each person doing their part."
A member of the Elizabeth River Project is interested in trying to restore the guitar if the owner is not found. If the owner is found, however, they will get the guitar back.