Image of the Piano For Sale

The Shea Family Piano!

Brigham Larson Pianos

I am a former fifth grade teacher who now spends her days as homeschooling mother to five kids, ranging from 16 to under one. I have spent the past five years helping with a volunteer organization for refugees as well as offering classes to other homeschool children in our community. At my mother’s passionate insistence, I began piano lessons when I was in third grade, practicing on a family heirloom instrument. It was the same piano she’d learned on, and her mother before her, and her father before her. I played for hours a day as a teenager, pounding away at passion pieces from classical to bossa nova to an intense infatuation with Phantom of the Opera. The piano had become a little unsightly, and had been thus relegated to the garage at that time, so while other neighbors had a garage band, I performed a garage piano concert. About three years into our marriage, my husband surprised me by bringing that family piano into our tiny new home. I couldn’t have been more thrilled. My old college roommates visted and were delighted along with me! We’d spent hours gathered around a silly keyboard singing together, and now — we were back, and upgraded to a real instrument! Singing, giggling, and shifting who was pianist based on how high the song went or how wide the left hand intervals were — it was a return to heaven. Then came children, homeschooling, recitals, volunteering, and several moves. Our piano has been there for it all.
Our Meister piano was built in 1907, the same year Carl Larsen, my great-Grandpa, was born. He purchased the piano secondhand in Holliday, Utah during the Great Depression. He bought it used — dirt poor but just had to have it. Music was vital to a happy home, he said. It was on that piano that my grandma Norene, the only girl with four brothers, learned to play. When Norene started writing her brother’s missionary companion, and later married him, she took the piano to their home in Idaho and later to Brigham City and then Kaysville. Her oldest daughter, Christy, took lessons and became very proficient. While in Brigham, Norene’s oldest son, full of childish ambition and benevolence, thought he would be a dear and refinish the piano. Of course he stopped after only a few hours, but the bench still bears testimony to his exuberance if not his endurance. After Christy married and started a home, the piano moved with her to Bountiful, then Oregon, then back to Kaysville. For several years she paid for my piano lessons despite living well below poverty levels. She also used the piano for income, teaching lessons to neighborhood kids to supplement my dad’s income during the early 1990s. Under my stewardship, the piano moved to Provo and then Syracuse. I, too, paid for piano lessons while struggling deeply financially. When Covid hit, our world turned upside down. With the world falling apart outside, our home became a haven, especially with home church. My children, husband, and I gathered around the piano to sing our hymns together. I count that among my most sacred experiences of that otherwise very difficult era. Thus far, the piano has been the Larson, Kershaw, Costantino, and Shea piano, being owned by five generations and passed from oldest daughter to oldest daughter for three of those generations. My daughter, now 16, will be the fourth when she has her own home. Sadly, with each passing decade the piano, while still beloved, has fallen into greater and greater disrepair. My own children were gifted an electric piano and prefer it for having all keys working and being in-tune. I can’t blame them — especially with the broken keys — but it has made this heirloom little more than a massive emotional keepsake. It collects dust and homeschool clutter. It deserves so much more. Note: I am a busy homeschooling mom without the requisite skills to make a video without it taking over my life. I've searched through family photos from my own childhood, but finances meant that my mother didn't take many pictures. I am trying to contact my grandmother to see if any pictures exist from her childhood or parenthood. It’s a work in progress. I know I have some from my children on a hard drive in the basement, but I don’t know when you’re closing this giveaway, so I’m just going to enter now.

  • YEAR 1900-1910
  • MAKE From Generation to Generation, this cherished piano was purchased during the Great Depression!
  • FINISH Mahogany
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