17 York Street

Architectural Description: 

Colonial Revival

Historical Narrative: 

Shawsheen Village was named after the Native American name for the river Shawshin, which means Great Spring. . All the streets in the Village were named for Castles & Cathedrals in Great Britain. York Street takes its name from York Minster Cathedral, Seat of the Archbishop of York, second highest office in the Church of England. The Gothic Church is one of the largest in Northern Europe. There is also a York Castle, in York, England. A Norman castle built by William I

Prior to Shawsheen Village this area was known as Frye Village. The town of Andover purchased land from York Street to the Boston and Maine Railroad for the use of a Town Farm or Alms House in 1807.

This home was built as part of the Shawsheen Village development 1918 – 1924 by William M. Wood, President of the American Woolen Company. Wood hired about eight different architects to design the homes and structures for the village. Homes were sold or leased through the Homestead Association who had offices in the Post Office building on the corner of North Main & Poor Streets.

A walk down York Street will find a mix of the old and new as Wood moved a few older homes in Frye Village to sites on York St. Each home incorporates 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 add to the “icing on the cake, of the maintained original designs. Most of the homes now sport a variety of different colors no longer all white with green shutters as dictated in the original deeds.

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, which had been deeded the property in December 1920. The A.W.Co. Board of Directors authorized its President, Lionel J. Noah, to deliver all deeds, as deemed necessary to the Textile Realty 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.

One of the first occupants of record to lease the home from 1926-1934 were Charles & Gertrude Bailey. Charles was a Lawyer and State Inspector of Motor Vehicles.

This house was sold to Mary A. Ford, wife of William C. Ford on June 30, 1934. William was an attorney with his office "W.C. and E. J. Ford" in Lawrence, MA. Mary placed the deed in both their names on June 27, 1949. William Ford died on June 1, 1956. Mary A. Ford estate was probated by Salvatore J. Basile, Conservator on Feb. 13, 1958.

The property was then sold to Edward J. & Joan M. O'Donnell on Apr. 23, 1958. Edward was a Social worker. O'Donnells owned for five years then selling to Daniel A. & Theresa H. Conlon on Jan. 2, 1963. Daniel is an Engineer. Theresa Conlon is an active member and president of the Shawsheen Women's Club. Theresa is also a member of Andover Historical Society, bringing her expertise to the Collection Committee, volunteering time researching the Library collections. The Conlon family continue as owners of record of the property, (2015) now 52 years.


Essex County Registry Deeds, Salem, MA
Essex Northern Registry Deeds, Lawrence, MA
Andover Maps, 1852, 1872, 1888, 1906, 1926
Andover Street Directories
Mills, Mergers and Mansions, by Edward Roddy 1982
See Map plan #704 - American Woolen Company - Sept. 1927
#878 - June 1932 - Textile Realty Company lot #1
See #7 Argyle St. for Town Farm history

Samuel Abbot - 1804 - 90 acre farm
Inhabitants of Town of Andover - 1807 – 1921 – Town Farm
Varter & Havenes Dagdegian - July 11, 1921 - b. 443 p. 503
Town of Andover, Geo. C. H. Dufton - July 12, 1921 - b. 443 p. 505 - 13.66 A
Town of Andover, July 12, 1921 - Town Meeting Nov. 1, 1921 sell
American Woolen Co., Wm. M. Wood - July 11, 1921 - b. 443 p. 296 - 12.56 acres - lot 1
American Woolen Co.- Nov. 15, 1921 - b. 450 p. 342 - 10 acres- lot 2
Textile Realty Co., Lionel J. Noah, Pres. A.W.Co. - Dec. 30, 1931 - b. 563 p. 334
Andover Shawsheen Realty Co. - June. 30, 1932 - b. 565 p. 87 - 13th parcel
Mary A. Ford - June 30, 1934 - b. 579 p. 76
Mary A. & William C. Ford - June 27, 1949 - b. 724 p. 386
William C. Ford estate, Mary A. Ford heir, June 1, 1956
Mary A. Ford estate, Salvatore J. Basile, Cnsr. - Feb. 13, 1958 - Probate
Edward J. & Joan M. O'Donnell - Apr. 23, 1958 - b. 872 p. 64
Daniel A. & Theresa H. Conlon - Jan. 2, 1963 - b. 977 p. 126
Babbling Brook Realty Trust - Jan. 1, 1997 - b. 4682 p. 63

Inventory Data:

StreetYork St
PlaceShawsheen Village - Frye Village
Historic DistrictShawsheen Village NRH District
Historic NameFord - Conlon House
Present Useresidence
Original Useresidence
Construction Date1922 - 1923
SourceERDS, ENRDL, assessers' rec./style-njs
Architectural StyleColonial Revival
Roofhip - slate
Major AlterationsThe only elements missing from original build, an entrance porch roof balustrade, window boxes, and replacement shutters.
Acreage0.178 acre; acreage: 7,750 sq. ft.
Map and parcel36-13
MHC NumberANV.1433
Recorded byStack/Mofford, James Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date entered1975 - 1977, 7/18/2015