Thurston County Sesquicentennial
Steamboat Island Area
Originally published Saturday, January 12, 2002
The Steamboat Island area is rich in history. Local settlers who said it resembled a steamboat named it Steamboat Island.
The Carlyon Beach Clubhouse on Island Drive Northwest is named for man who came from Wisconsin, first settling in Centralia. He married Coralie Chambers and managed their Yelm ranch. The clubhouse was actually a boathouse and store for Carlyon Beach, a fishing resort that operated from 1927-59. The clubhouse is located on Sandy Point on Squaxin Passage, immediately south of Steamboat Island.
Rignall Hall, on Northwest Urquhart Street, was part of the Rignall Civic Improvement Club, which was founded in 1924 and named for an early resident of the Hunter Point area. It's on land donated by I.M. Noble and was built with clubhouse labor. The club originally was organized in Noble's store, also the Rignall post office. The clubhouse was a community meeting spot for a long time, and is one of the few remaining vestiges of early Hunter's Point.
The grange built Prosperity Grange, on Steamboat Island Road, in 1909. The first hall burned in 1928, and the present hall was built in 1930. The old Griffin schoolhouse was used in the interim.
Holly Hills Farm rounds out the historical spots near Steamboat Island. The farmhouse, along Heritage Street Northwest, was built in 1928 by chiropractor A.B. Fitschin.
He began planting holly in 1932 and harvested it as the Red Berry Holly Farm in a couple of varieties. Fitschin and his wife designed the house, which remains virtually unaltered.
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