Last Wednesday, workers improving the sidewalk outside the new Artspace building on S. Main Street had been surprised to uncover an underground tunnel just below the new Budget Music & Video location at number 11.
The discovery gave the building's owners the opportunity to finally remove a wall safe that had been attached to the basement below, which until the mid-1960s had been a pool hall. Without the combination, the safe had not been opened in at least 30 years, and was taken to Schock's Safe and Lock Service for cracking.
On Saturday, the contents were finally revealed...
"Unfortunately it was an anticlimax for us," said Beth Kjelson, a co-owner of Artmain and of the building the safe was unearthed from. "There was absolutely nothing."
Even so, she admitted "it was a lot of fun," citing the old adage "nothing ventured, nothing gained."
"Schocks would like the lock mechanism," Kjelson went on to explain.
Duane Haberlock, the locksmith who finally opened the safe, described it as being built around the turn of last century. The lock had a couple of parts missing, but was of "an unusual brand" he found of interest.
The remainder of the safe will be scrapped. Mystery solved, the hole in their basement wall has already been patched and the sidewalk repaired, in preparation for Budget's opening later this week.