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1908 diary found in Michigan Home Depot parking lot

On Wednesday, Dec. 9, a customer in the parking lot at the Home Depot store in Plainwell, Mich., found a diary that holds information dating back to 1908.

PLAINWELL, Mich. — A trip to your friendly, neighborhood Home Depot often leads to making something that's become 'old' in your home, 'new' again. 

It doesn't usually involve encountering a 'new' experience of serendipitously finding something 'old,' but that's what happened to a Home Depot customer in Plainwell, Mich. on the evening of Dec. 9.

The customer, who remains unknown, was walking into the store when they saw a black, square-shaped object laying in the parking lot. The customer picked it up, brought it inside the store and turned it into the Customer Service Desk.

"It's a diary, of some sort," said Caitlen Lonabarger, who is one of the cashiers at the Plainwell Home Depot. "My associates and I immediately realized how valuable this was."

Credit: 13 ON YOUR SIDE
On Dec. 9, a customer entering the Home Depot store in Plainwell, Mi. found a 1908 diary in the parking lot. The store hopes to reunite it with the owner.
Credit: 13 ON YOUR SIDE
On Dec. 9, a customer entering the Home Depot store in Plainwell, Mi. found a 1908 diary in the parking lot. The store hopes to reunite it with the owner.
Credit: 13 ON YOUR SIDE
On Dec. 9, a customer entering the Home Depot store in Plainwell, Mi. found a 1908 diary in the parking lot. The store hopes to reunite it with the owner.

Lonabarger began reading through the diary, which was very old, and had the words, "Places Visited" printed on the cover.

"I immediately saw the date, 1908," said Lonabarger. "Page after page involved hand-written details about vacations that were taken over a hundred years ago."

Inside some of the small, frayed pockets of the diary were several folded-up, paper inserts. One of them was a hand-drawn family tree.

"I see the names William and Edward," said Lonabarger, while reading the family tree leaflet. "And there's one last name — Osborn."

Lonabarger, and all of the associates at the Plainwell Home Depot, are hoping that this valuable family artifact can be returned to the person who lost it.

"It could have rained, snowed or been run over by a car in the parking lot," added Lonabarger. "It's kind of a Christmas Miracle."

If you recognize the diary, or if it belongs to you or a family member, please call the Home Depot store in Plainwell, Mi. — (269) 685-8632, then extension 101.

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