16 Fletcher Street
Site of History 🛈The Site of History tag is given to properties that were lost before this building survey was undertaken.

Architectural Description: 

Colonial Revival single family house. wood clapboards, green shutters, side porch.

Historical Narrative: 

16 Fletcher St. 9-81 Lot 9 John F. & Margaret B. Craig House

Fletcher Street was originally built with 14 homes, 10 were single family residences and 4 were double houses. With the construction of Route 495 the Commonwealth of Massachusetts took every property by eminent domain on Dec. 29, 1960. Five homes on Binney St. were also lost. By 1963 Fletcher Street no longer existed. Some homes were moved to new locations but the majority was demolished.

One of the goals of the Andover Preservation Commission is to identify historic places and sites. We re-list Fletcher St. as it was once a historic part of the Shawsheen Village development. We also honor the families that made their homes on Fletcher St. and their contribution to the community.

The homes were built as part of the Shawsheen Village development from 1918-1924 by William M. Wood, President of the American Woolen Company. With the construction of the Shawsheen Mill housing was necessary for operatives employed in the mill. Wood hired about eight different architects to design the homes and structures for the village. Homes were leased through the Homestead Association with offices in the Post Office building in Shawsheen Square, then later moved into the Administration Building.
Each home incorporated a different look, style and design modifications, most noticeable with the front door entrances. Decorative details on the corner boards and a variety of ornamental trellises, window boxes all added the “icing on the cake, of the original designs. Mr. Wood also incorporated two family duplexes in every section of the new Village.
The properties came with deed restrictions. No stores, factories, or other buildings of any business nature shall be erected... only professional, doctor, dentist or other professional occupations,…No shed, hen houses or out buildings, except a one or two stall garage, which shall have a pitched roof and be of the same general architectural pattern & material, and of the same color, as the building on said premises,…have a cement, macadam, asphalt or crushed stone driveway. No single house erected less than$3500 and no double houses less than $5000. All buildings shall be kept painted white, buff or gray, all with the same setback from the street.

After the death of William M. Wood on Feb. 2, 1926 most of the residential and commercial buildings were then sold. Some were held by the Wood family in the "Arden Trust" and others with the American Woolen Company. The AWCo. Board of Directors authorized its President, Lionel J. Noah, to deliver all deeds, as deemed necessary to the Textile Realty Co. for sale on Dec. 29, 1931.

The Textile Realty then transferred ownership to the Andover Shawsheen Realty Company on June 30, 1932, holding the mortgage on the properties. T. Edwin Andrew, treasurer, was authorized to sell or lease the properties. With the Great Depression sales were sluggish and many homes were rented until the economy rebounded.
Number #16 is not listed in the 1925 voter registration directory and may have been vacant at that time of publication. The first tenant of record was Thomas Hodgdon and operative in the mills. In 1928 Charles J. McIntyre resides here. The 1930 Directory lists Arthur L & Gladys Rodger. Roger is a Percher in the Shawsheen Mill. In 1932 James & Mary Egitton and son Nicholas are listed. James is a Caretaker. 1935 finds William F. & Mary J. Tammany and in 1937 Carleton W. & Marjorie Miller are renting the house. Carleton is a Service Foreman for Royal Typewriter Co. in Lawrence MA.. The Millers would occupy this house until 1941 when it was purchased by John F. & Margaret B. Craig. At that time the Miller purchased the house next door at #18 Fletcher St. and moved down.

John Fleming Craig was born in Johnstone Scotland on June 11, 1904, son of George Craig. John at age 21 immigrated to America on the “Caledonia” through Ellis Island, NYC on March 23, 1926 and was headed to Andover to join his brother George Craig. John married Margaret Bruce b. Mar. 17, 1908 also in Johnstone, Scotland, daughter of Thomas & Ellen M. (McReady) Bruce. They had three children; Margaret b. 1932 in Flint, Michigan, Lois b. 1935 and John “Jack” b. 1945. John is listed in 1930 as a Tool Maker for automobile factory in Flint, Michigan. Margaret is working in the mailing department. The family returned to Andover and lived at 54 Red Spring Rd. in 1940. John was a mixer at Tyre Rubber Co. and Margaret a Packer there. The Craig family were the only private owners of this house and were forced to sell by eminent domain to the State for the construction of I-495 in 1960.


Sylvester P. Smith and William Leverett
Sylvester P. Smith - Oct. 14, 1854 - b. 451 leaf 293 - Salem deeds
Sylvester P. Smith estate, of Worcester, MA - died. Apr. 18, 1889
J. Walter Smith and Cleora L. Smith of Worcester, MA heirs
Howard E. Sumner - Aug. 9, 1901 - b. 187 p. 497
Cleora L. (Smith) Sumner, Trustee - 1901
Henry P. Binney, Trustee of AWCo. - July 30, 1909 - b. 277 p. 314
American Woolen Company - Dec. 30, 1920 - b. 435 p. 215
Textile Realty Company - Dec. 30, 1931 - b. 563 p. 229
Andover Shawsheen Realty Co. – June 30, 1932 – b. 565 p. 87
John F. & Margaret B. Craig – June 27, 1941 – b. 642 p. 323
John F. & Margaret B. Craig – July 30 1942 – b. 652 p. 482
Commonwealth of Massachusetts – Dec. 29, 1960 – b. 929 p. 323

Inventory Data:

StreetFletcher St
PlaceShawsheen Village
Historic DistrictShawsheen Village NRH District
Historic NameJohn F. & Margaret B. Craig House
Present UseHighway Route 495
Original UseResidence
Construction Date1923
Architectural StyleColonial Revival
Foundationstone, granite
Demolition DetailsRazed in 1962 for 495 construction
Acreage8600 square ft.
Recorded byJames S. Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date enteredApril 9, 2023