St. Mary Catholic Church, Coupeville, WA

St. Mary

Catholic Church - Coupeville, WA

   207 North Main St. - PO Box 1443
     Coupeville, WA 98239
  (360) 678-6536
     (360) 675-9490 Fax
  smbulletin@staugustineoh.org



St. Mary Parish History

Early in January, 1866, Mrs. Daniel Pearson, accompanied by her teenaged son and daughter, prepared to board the steamship CONTINENTAL in New York Harbor to make the trip around the tip of South America to the Washington Territory. They would be part of the Second Mercer Expedition.

Early in January, 1866, Mrs. Daniel Pearson, accompanied by her teenaged son and daughter, prepared to board the steamship CONTINENTAL in New York Harbor to make the trip around the tip of South America to the Washington Territory. They would be part of the Second Mercer Expedition.

Mrs. Pearson and the children sailed on January 17, and they arrived in San Francisco on April 24, 1866. In a few days, they were sailing north on a smaller ship, landing on May 31, at Port Townsend, the port of entry for the Washington Territory at that time. On June 1, they sailed by ferry to Whidbey Island, coming ashore at Ebey’s Landing. St. Mary Church As they climbed the bluff to their new home in the lighthouse, Flora Augusta Pearson, age 15, felt she was “one step from heaven.”

And so, the Pearson family and other pioneer families settled Central Whidbey Island on “land donations.” Flora Pearson worked with her father as Assistant Lighthouse Keeper for eleven years. On May 8, 1876, she was married to William B. Engle in Victoria, B.C. by the Reverend A. Russ, A Wesleyan minister.

They returned to Whidbey to take up residence on Hill Harmon, part of the Alexander Donation Claim.

In January, 1889, a committee was appointed to solicit money ($1000) to build a church, and in June of 1889 they began building. The church was incorporated on July 24, 1889.

By October 5, 1889, the congregation was moving ahead to complete the tower. The church was officially dedicated as the First Congregational Church of Coupeville on January 26, 1890.

In the year 1890, there arrived in Coupeville a bell from the McShane Bell Foundry of Baltimore, Maryland. It weighed 800 pounds, was made of "bell metal" – i.e. 80% copper, and 20% tin, and cost $205.00. It was a gift to the church and was inscribed as follows:

"O Come, Let Us Worship" Presented to the First Congregational Church, Coupeville by T.W. Calhoun & E.J. Hancock 1890

The Puget Sound Academy was an "Academy of College" under the auspices and management of the Congregational Church, but open to all people. It took the place of high School in the Puget Sound area. The academy was very popular after it opened in 1886. Students came from Seattle, Tacoma, Port Townsend, and other surrounding towns and cities. When the original school on Lower Main Street burned in 1896; it was rebuilt on land south of the new church. A dormitory was built east of the church. As high schools became more common in the cities and towns of Puget Sound, enrollment in the academy fell. It was eventually moved by the Congregational Confederation to Snohomish, but the academy, now known as the Whidbey Island Academy, a private school, continued into the 1900s.

Full Story

 
 ;