Out on Ebey's Prairie, near Coupeville, the Carl Engle home is a treasurehouse of pioneer items, each with a story.
        Perhaps the most treasured item in the house is the old Jacob Chickerling piano on which Mercer Girl, Flora P. Engle once gave piano lessons in Coupeville.
        This piano has done what few living people have ever done--it came around the horn.  The piano wa bought in Lowell, Massachusets in 1855, and when Flora Engle decided she wanted it here in 1866, on the second westward expedition, it was shipped through the Straights of Magellan.
        It landed in Port Townsend, with still a stretch of water between it and its new home.  Dismantled it was shipped across to the Admiralty Head lighthouse in a small boat, with the freight bill for transportation $75!
        The quaint little piano is a cross between an spinette and a baby grand, but there's nothing here quite like it.  Made of rosewood, it has beautiful handcarved legs which screw on.  During its long water trip here, the legs were merely detached, and when it arrived at its destination they were replaced.
       Carl Engle who spends many a leisure hour at its keys (see picture above) also recalls that the piano was out of the family for 15 years.  It had belonged to Flora Engle who sold it to Mrs. A. Kineth.  It traveled about through three different hands before the Engles, who were prepared to move heaven and earth to get it back, finally purchased it.  Since that time, and still today, it graces the livingroom of the Engle home, always and attraction when visitors come.
        While Mr. Engle's prize possession graces the living room, Mrs. Engle's prizes are a reservior of interestin the dining room.  It wasn't too long ago that her neighbors of Coupeville first heard about her hobby--collecting pitchers.
        She has close to 500 now--big ones, little ones, china ones, glass ones--pitchers from 28 countries and 24 states--and one that came through the San Francisco fire.
        But those are just statistics--they fail to tell at all the sentiment behind those pitchers.  Most of them were given to Mrs. Engle.  When friends learned of her collection, they wanted one of their prize pitchers in her collection--they knew she would take care of it and preserve it, and love it.  People who didn't know her or knew her only slightly came to her with beautiful pitchers--they wanted their mother's pitcher in her collection.
       Since the time she was a young girl she always loved pitchers, and she  had 30 carefully stored away.  In 1911 she started collecting them.  Many years ago Ted Truax, former Times Editor, wrote a short paragraph about her 30 pitchers.  Since that time the pitchers started coming to her home.  And with each gift Mrs. Engle has kept a careful record.  Who gave it, its history and any little thing that was said about it.  Those 500 pitchers are displayed in a glass case and Mrs. Engle can easily pick out one, tell who gave it and its history.
       Pictured above Mrs. Angle has before her some of her most prized pitchers--those representing pioneer families on Whidbey.
        The one she holds in her hand is her favorite.  It's a little white china pitcher--first early bone--that was her mother's, Mrs. Elizabeth Smith Wanamaker.  It was brought to this country from England and was part of a tea set given to her mother by a brother-in-law.
        Others in this collction on the table are a Doulton china pitcher that is 54 years old.  It was given to Flora P. Engle by son Carl when he was 16.  She has the Holbrook pitcher, one brought through the Seattle fire; a pitcher that came through the San Francisco earthquake and fire, the Mitchell pitcher, Mrs. Marion Power's pitcher, Christina Barrington Power's pitcher, and 80-year-old pitcher belonging to Aunt Mary Calhoun.  An English Lustre pitcher belonging to Mrs. Carl Engle (over 100 years old); and Nellie Lovejoy Watson's, Julia Hancock's, Ida Alexander Sill's, Hattie Swift Race's, Mrs. Geo. Libbey's, Clara Libbey Willard's, Sadie Cook's, Mrs. Charles Terry's, Mrs. and Mrs. Ralph Engle's, and Mollie Craney Clapp's.  The are all on the table before her in the picture.
        Most descendants of Coupeville have brought their mother's pitcher to her to add to her tremendous and beautiful collection.
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