RICHMOND, Va. -- Now that the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee has been taken down in Richmond, crews plan to remove a piece of history from its gigantic pedestal.
A time capsule from 1887 that state officials believe is tucked inside the statue’s base is set to be removed Thursday.
But as of 10 a.m. on Thursday, crews were having a hard time locating the time capsule.
Regardless, Governor Ralph Northam's Chief of Staff Clark Mercer said they will be placing a new time capsule inside that contains 39 items reflective of current times.
Those include an expired vial of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, a piece of ribbon from the unveiling on Kehinde Wiley's Rumors of War statue and a photo of a Black ballerina with her fist raised near the Lee statue.
The 1887 capsule is believed to contain Confederate memorabilia and a picture of Abraham Lincoln in his coffin.
State leaders said the plan is to preserve the 1880s capsule at the state's conservation lab.
Virginia Chief Diversity Officer Dr. Janice Underwood said, "The items that are coming out of the time capsule now represented a Virginia way back when, but only a narrow view of what Virginia stood for and epitomized. But today, on this table, represents such a diverse picture of what Virginia is and who we want to be."