17 Baker Lane

Historical Narrative: 

Abbott Village was established early in the 1800's with an more than adequate source of water to power the mills. Abel & Paschal Abbott moved their wool mill operation here from North Parish about 1813 and had a successful business until about 1838 when the market turned. The mill buildings were sold to Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. in 1843. The flax to linen thread company was established in Frye Village in 1835 (Shawsheen Village) and relocated up river to this location.

This home was most likely built as a home for mill a worker and his family. The house is listed on the 1852 Map and the 1850 Andover Valuation with a Thomas Donnefon [sic] dwelling house and land $250. In 1860 Thomas Donovan house Abbott Village $450. The property was conveyed by Patrick Donovan to Jane Close on Dec. 18, 1895. After Close died, a public administrator Nathaniel C. Rankin settled the estate and the property was sold to Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. on Dec. 6, 1918.

Smith & Dove recognized the need for operative housing and slowly acquired several homes in the immediate area. They also built quality housing for their working force at 62-84 Essex St. and the double homes on Brechin Terrace. Every home on Baker Lane was once owned by Smith & Dove. The company reorganized and incorporated in 1864 and again in 1912 bringing all their properties together into one deed.

Smith & Dove Co. supplied their workers with a Village Hall (#77 Essex St.) for community gatherings, and built “Hillside” on Shawsheen Rd. for single women workers; provided childcare service, bowling alley, laundry and large dining room used for meetings and parities. S & D Co. also bought the old Cricket Field for the company soccer, football and baseball teams and sponsored many field day outings for their employees.

William H. Skinner conveyed all rights on Baker Lane to John Smith, President of Smith & Dove Co. on May 18, 1850. It was the first of eight properties acquired by the company on the lane between 1850 and 1918.

In 1927 the Smith & Dove Co. was sold to the Ludlow Co. The housing real estate was placed in the Smith & Dove Tenements, Inc. that year, changing the name to Andover Homes, Inc. that were then sold off into private hands. The company operations were moved to Ludlow, MA and the mill closed in 1928.

Andover Homes, Inc. sold off the properties and this home was sold to William & Mary Snyder on July 6, 1928. The property included lots 29, 30, 31 and a portion of 32 on the S & D map plan 676 in 1927. Snyder sold off parcels but held on to #17 until July 21, 1953 when he sold to Frank & Sonja G. Aitken of New Jersey. Aitken moved to Venezuela on business and sold the house to Gordon & Elspeth McGibbon of Salem, NH. in Aug. 1959

The McGibbons held the home for two years selling to Richard H. Wallace in Aug. 1961. He then sold to Alexander & Dorothy (Boynes) McGibbon on Nov. 1, 1963. Alex McGibbon was the son of Charles & Annebelle (Raymond) McGibbon. He was a Veteran and truck driver. Alex died at 70 years on Nov. 6, 1985. Dorothy inherits the property and places the property into the Baker Lane Realty Trust in Mar. 1998 with her and Dorothy DiGloria as trustees. Dorothy McGibbon died in July 10 1998. They are both interred in Methuen.

Dorothy DiGloria the surviving trustee sold the McGibbon estate to Glenn Ippolito of the Bouyant Realty Trust on Dec. 11, 1998.


Essex County Registry Deeds, Salem, MA
Essex Northern Registry Deeds, Lawrence, MA
Andover Townsman
Historical Sketches of Andover, S. Bailey 1880
Andover Maps, 1830, 1852, 1856, 1872, 1888, 1896, 1901, 1930
See. Plan maps #676 Smith & Dove land holdings in Abbott Village 1927,
#682 Smith & Dove 1927 Baker Lane, and #5149 Snyder 1964

Patrick Donovan
Jane Close - Dec. 18, 1895 - b. 144 p. 160
Jane Close estate, Nathaniel C. Rankin Pub. Admin. Probate #127726
Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. - Dec. 6, 1918 - b. 393 p. 214
Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. - Feb. 1, 1927 - b. 529 p. 587
Smith & Dove Tenements,Inc. - Feb. 21, 1927 - b. 529 p. 587-588
Andover Homes, Inc. Walter Amesbury, treas. - Dec. 31, 1927 - b. 529 p. 583
William J. & Mary Snyder - July 6, 1928 - b. 541 p. 42 - lots 29, 30, 31, & part of 32
Frank & Sonja G. Aitkin - July 21, 1953 - b. 753 p. 505
Gordon & Elspeth McGibbon - Aug. 10, 1959 - b. 899 p. 291
Richard H. Wallace - Aug. 10, 1961 - b. 941 p. 321
Alexander & Dorothy (Boynes) McGibbon - Nov. 1, 1963 - b. 977 p. 321
Dorothy McGibbon, by will Alexander died Nov. 6, 1985
Dorothy McGibbon Estate, Dorothy DiGloria trustee, D. McGibbon died July 10, 1998
Baker Lane Realty Trust, Dorothy DiGloria - Mar. 23, 1998 - b. 4999 p. 313
Bouyant Realty Trust, Glenn Ippolito - Dec. 11, 1998 - b.5273 p. 303

Inventory Data:

StreetBaker Ln
PlaceAbbott Village
Historic DistrictAndover Village Industrial NRH District
Historic NameThomas Donovan House
Present Useresidence
Original Useresidence
Construction Datecirca 1850
Architectural StyleOther
Foundationstone and brick
Wall/Trimclapboards/vinyl covered
Map and parcel54-55
Recorded byStack/Mofford, James Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date entered1975-77, 5/2014