Archive Record

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Object Name Typescript
Object ID 19.01
Search Terms recollections
oral history
Island Store
Collection Parker and Pintard Mills Oral History Collection
Scope & Content Transcripts of the interview of Pin and Parker Mills, conducted by Gene Peck.
Page 1 of 6; The Mills came to Captiva for the first time on their Honeymoon, and they stayed at the Gulf View Inn (where the Mucky Duck is now); they rented a motor boat from Andy Rosse, and had all kinds of adventures; before they left, Parker wanted to buy a lot on Captiva, so they bought some land from Kay Jeffcote, the leading realtor in Ft. Myers; Albert Spalding (a musician of the time) tells the story of how a jalopy comes over the San-Cap bridge and asks if there is anything on Captiva, and they turn around displeased (a.k.a. no movie theater, soda machine, etc.)
Page 2 of 6; Albert's story is about the unspoiled Captiva before the causeway was built and the island was developed; the Ark is the Stranahan house, which was hauled onto shore and built around (it was a houseboat; the Tuttles purchased it in 1983); Alice Miner had built the ark, and equipped it with all kinds of appliances, and the Miners had originally used the houseboat
Page 3 of 6; they felt that they should have their property adjacent to the Miners house (now on land); they eventually were able to swap lots with the person who owned the 100 foot lot next to the Miners; they went to a lawyer, but neglected to recieve a receipt; they were convinced by friends that they should not worry because they were in Florida; sure enough, one week later, their new deed arrived in the mail; Parker Mills ran the Island Sotre when they rented their house
Page 4 of 6; There was a beauty shop right next to the Island store, and the facilities were through that store; Jay Darling owned all of the property around the Island Store, including the house they lived in; he started working for Ding Darling in 1949, and bought the store from him in 1952; the store has been repainted and slightly remodeled; there used to be a restaurant accompanying the grocery store; the restaurant was run by Signe Wightman (Karlie Wightman's mother); Wightman served rabbit one night, and it was delicious, and some people who had opted out of eating the rabbit came back the next night for chicken; however, Signe served them the rabbit and they thought it was delicious!
Page 5 of 6; Pin didn't enjoy running the store, but every so often she would have to because Parker needed to run to the bank or in town; one day, some wealthy people came in and kept buying and buying more and more items, and their total came out to $1,353,142.39; Mr. Futch, who lived on Buck Key, came into the store one day when Pin was running it to purchase his snuff; he had a vitamin deficiency that made his skin look funy; she scooped up his money with cardboard (which he pulled out of a long sock) so that the germs wouldn't be in the cash register.
Page 6 of 6; Pin came into the store one day to pick up some lamb's kidneys, but she confused a women who had just been to the shell fair and thought that she had missed a shell since she had seen "sailor's ears and kitten's paws, and turkey wings, bleeding teeth, and lion's paws"; Signe Wightman ran the restaraunt for 6 or 7 years, and was marvelous cook; Parker sold the store to Dick and Dee Hahn on June 29, 1971; Pin gave up her job at Macy's in 1955 to come down to Captiva, and she was elected treasurer of the Captiva Civic Association; when she noticed that people hadn't paid their dues for many years, she biked around the island to collect money from them; Jack MacMurray was one of the presidents of the CCA at the time.
People Mills, Pin
Mills, Parker
Peck, Gene
Spalding, Albert
Jeffcote, Kay
Wightman, Signe
MacMurray, Jack
Futch, Mr.