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Library dedication ceremony to honor island icon Louise Tuttle

By Staff | Mar 4, 2010

Louise Tuttle poses with her handmade, fully-furnished dollhouse that she’s donated to the CCA’s 44th annual ABC Sale.

On Wednesday, March 17 at 4:30 p.m., Louise Tuttle and Svea Scott will give a presentation at the Captiva Memorial Library’s Cultural Fest, detailing the island’s rich, colorful history, including many stories about one of Captiva’s oldest families, the Dickey family.

Cultural Fest is a weekly program featuring foreign films, live music and educational presentations on a wide variety of topics.

But this presentation will be a little different. Before the program begins, Tuttle will be recognized during a plaque dedication ceremony in the library.

Last year, at the Captiva Civic Association’s annual ABC Sale, one unique item – a needlepoint rug made in 1985 – was auctioned off and purchased by three Captiva couples.

These six Captivans had the rug cleaned and framed and donated it to the library in honor of Tuttle.

The 1985 “Captiva Rug” was designed and needlepointed by a group of Captivans and then raffled off to raise funds for the Captiva Civic Association’s scholarship fund and the Captiva Memorial Library. After an almost 25-year absence from the Captiva, the rug now hangs in the library.

“The three couples wanted to donate it, not to be stepped upon, but to be admired. They wanted to donate it as a thank you to Louise,” said Chapel By-the-Sea chairperson Susan Stuart.

“Louise and her late husband George have done all sorts of things for the island,” Stuart said, noting that George designed many island buildings, including the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum and several island homes.

“The Tuttles came to Captiva and bought the Island Store, and Louise tells terribly funny stories about running the store. One time, she ran out of tomatoes and had to drive all the way to Bailey’s to get more,” Stuart said.

To Stuart, and many other islanders, Tuttle is an important part of the very fabric of Captiva – she is very involved with the Chapel, helped to rejuvenate the Captiva cemetery and still volunteers a few days a week at the library.

Tuttle has even donated her fully furnished, handmade dollhouse to this year’s ABC Sale auction.

“The people that know and love her hold her in great respect. We just want to thank her for all the wonderful things she’s done,” Stuart said.

The rug is currently hanging on the left wall as you walk into the library.

The dedication ceremony will begin at 4:30 p.m. at the library and Tuttle and Scott will then give their Cultural Fest presentation in the Civic Center.

For more information about the program, call 472-2133.

The Captiva Memorial Library is located at 11560 Chapin Lane.