Last fall, a Bremerton couple made an unusual discovery within the hedge along their driveway: numerous vintage film reels in varying shapes and sizes.
Most of the reels contain clues to their owners: “Nov. 71, Becky’s 6th birthday,” “Florida Vacation, 1959-60,” or “Ostrander Picnic 1963.” But beyond that, it’s hard to know who they belong to — unless the owner were to recognize them.
Bremerton Police Officer Jeff Schaefer responded to the 600 block of Roosevelt Avenue last September to collect them from the curious couple. He believes they may have been discarded there by a thief who’d broken into a nearby home, but he can’t say for certain.
He’s since tried to find the owners, but has realized that without getting word out to the masses, the reels may just end up collecting dust in the department’s evidence room.
“I knew that when the reporting party turned these reels over to me, they were someone’s family treasures,” Schaefer said.
Schaefer says the discovery was one of the most intriguing of his career.
“Ever since I took custody of them, it’s been very important to me that I do all I can to get them back to their owner,” he said.
I’ve posted more photos below in the hopes that they’ll jog someone’s memory. Schaefer hopes so too.
“It would be my hope that someone out there would recognize the names or the events printed on the reel cans and be able to claim them,” he said. “I know that I would be elated if I had the opportunity to catch a glimpse of my family history like these films will for someone out there.”