18 Baker Lane

Architectural Description: 


Home built about 1830 in the Federal style

Historical Narrative: 

Themes: architectural, community development, industry.

Part of Abbott Village - moved here from Howarth Court, Smith & Dove Mill area circa 1918. Formerly used as superintendent's office building.

This house was once owned by Dr. James Howarth who purchased land on the east side of the Shawsheen River on high ground with a grand view of the river below. It was located just south of the Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. within what is now known Dundee Park.

Howarth Homestead and Howarth Mill

James Howarth was born on Nov. 25, 1783 in Rochdale, Lancashire, England. He married Dorothea “Dolly” Stott b. Feb. 17, 1783 in Rochdale dau. of Austin & Elizabeth (Holt) Stott. James and family immigrated to America in 1818 and settled in Andover, MA. They had five children at born in England; Ellen b. 1807, Mary H. b. 1808, John Jr. b. 1811, James b. 1814, and Thomas b. 1816. In England the Howarth family had long been associated with the textile industry. Both James and his brother Isaac were weavers and both came to Andover. Howarth established a woolen company in Abbott Village in 1824 under the name “John Howarth & Co.” The old stone mill was built by the Howarth family. James became a naturalized US citizen on Sept. 19, 1828. James died just four years later on Sept. 1, 1832 age 49. His sons and wife Dolly carried on the family business.

The partnership dissolved in 1837- The Salem Gazette, Oct. 27, 1837 – Ad. Section – “Partnership Dissolved – The partnership between the Subscribers, heretofore existing under the firm of John Howarth & Co. is this day dissolved by mutual consent. The affairs of the firm will be settled by James Howarth who alone is authorized to receive payment of the debts due, or to become due to the said concern. John Howarth, Dorothy Howarth, James Howarth – Andover, Sept. 8, 1837. 6w.”

There was a down turn in the market about this same period of time when they dissolved the partnership. The Abbott Brothers Mill, located near the Howarth Mill, was a victim to the recession and their mill was sold by creditors in 1843 to Smith, Dove & Co. linen thread producers in Frye Village, Andover. Smith & Dove would later purchase the Howarth Mill in 1847.

James Howarth, born 1814 in Rochdale, Lancashire, England, son of James & Dorothea Howarth, became a physician “who possessed an unusual of skill as a doctor and herb specialist.” James marriage intention was recorded on Feb. 1, 1834 to Sarah Farnum F. Towne b. 1805 in Greenfield, NH, daughter of Aaron & Patience (Freeto) Towne. Her father was from Andover, MA. They had three children;
Austin Thompson b. Feb.22, 1837 d. July 28, 1837 Andover, MA
Oberlin Beaumon b. Aug. 14, 1839 d. Jan. 20, 1914 Chelsea, MA
James Marcus b. Oct. 1842 b. Aug. 21, 1875 Andover, MA

Dr. James Howarth was a much respected and loved physician in town. His home was located on the east side of the Shawsheen River on a 10 acre flat plateau, above the Howarth Mill. The property extended to the river on the west and to the Boston and Main Railroad tracks to the east. The southern end of the property bordered Fish Brook and the Cricket Field. The house was sited with a commanding view of the mill pond below and his father’s mill.

James died on May 13, 1884 and was interred in the South Parish Church cemetery. His wife Sarah continued to live out her days in the old homestead. On Aug. 4, 1885 Sarah sold off a portion of her land to the Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. The piece of land included a right of way for Sarah to pass into her property. This would be later known as Howarth Court which began on Essex St. opposite Bakers Lane and lead up past the old Brick Block to the house. Sarah (Towne) Howarth died on Nov. 4, 1898. Son Oberlin who had lived on the estate with his mother sold the remaining 8 acre parcel and the Howarth Homestead to Smith & Dove on Jan. 10, 1900.

The property was then used to build a new mill building #5 in 1905, now #2 and #3 Dundee Park. The house remained in its original location for many years and was used as an office building for Smith & Dove. It was later moved to Bakers Lane about 1918.

Of James and Sarah Howarth’s children; son Austin died a few months after his birth.
James Marcus, known as Marcus, held a few different jobs in his short life. He gave his occupation as Broom Maker when he married Christina Cargan on Nov. 30, 1863. He was a machinist, farm laborer and worked for the railroad where his life ended while working laborer at age 32 on Aug. 21, 1875. His wife Christina b. in 1841, in Lowell, MA, dau. of Owen & Ann Cargan, sadly died prior to Marcus.

Oberlin B. became a carpenter. He married Mary Jane Witcomb b. 1839 in the North Parish of Andover, (now North Andover). Mary was the dau. of Benjamin & Polly (Thatcher) Witcomb. The entire family continued to live in Dr. James Howarth homestead in 1870 census. Oberlin was a Civil War veteran. They had four children; James O. b. Jan. 8, 1861-1950, George B. b. 1862 – d. Apr. 15, 1868 Scarlet Fever, Mary Haven b. Oct. 21, 1865 – d. Feb. 14, 1903 and Francis b. 1871 d. 1871.

Oberlin lived in the home with his family, parents, and grandmother Dolly. His father James died on May 13, 1884, his wife Mary Jane on Apr. 12, 1887 and his mother Sarah on Nov. 4, 1898. Oberlin would be the last Howarth to occupy the house. He moved to his daughter’s home on High St. Mary had married John E. Smith and had six children. Sadly Mary died in 1903.

Obituary - Andover Townsman- Jan. 1914 by Charlotte Helen Abbott;
"Oberlin B. Howarth, an old time resident of Andover, a G.A.R. veteran and member of Post 99, G.A.R., and well known here for the last 50 years as a semi-professional doctor and nurse, died on Tuesday, January 20 at the Soldier’s Home in Chelsea, where he had been an inmate for the past two years. Death was due to a fractured skull, caused by a fall which he received a few days previous.
Mr. Howarth was born on August 14, 1830, and was the son of “Old Doctor Howarth,” known and remembered by so many Andover people. His early life was passed in the family homestead near the river, which was bought some twenty years ago by the Smith & Dove M’f’g. Company. From his father who possessed an unusual of skill as a doctor and herb specialist, he inherited a love of medicine and by the exercise of this, together with his work as a carpenter, he gained his livelihood. He served through the Civil War, and many were the stories of his experiences during wartime which he was wont to relate. He also served the town at one time as chief of police. After the death of his wife he made his home with his daughter, Mrs. John E. Smith, until she passed away. He then took up quarters in the Draper block where he lived alone until his health began to fail and he went too Chelsea. The funeral was held on January 22 and burial was in Forest Dale Cemetery Chelsea.
Oberlin Howarth’s father, Dr. James Howarth, was born in Rochdale, Lancashire, and came here with his parents and other relatives to weave blankets and wool stuffs. When we knew the family best, Oberlin and his surviving brother, Marcus, lived in the fine old farmhouse, back of the Smith & Dove mill, owned by his father for many years, and where both his parents died. Oberlin was born August 14, 1839. He attended the Center school with his brother. He had many gifts, was on both sides the inheritor of fine nursing, and had a good knowledge in surgical emergencies. He was a born mechanic and always ready to help out in times of need.
His mother was Miss Sarah F. F. Towne of Greenfield, N.H., of the old Andover line, a most capable manager of the old homestead. His father a gifted physician. Mr. Howarth took up late in life the best work of his career, that of nursing and massage treatment. He also made up from his father’s recipes valuable medicines for physicians. His war record was from July 5, 1861 to July 8, 1864, Co. H, First Heavy Artillery, and life would not be dull in his company, as he had a gift for a good story. .... C.H.A."

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 in 1864 and again in 1912 bringing all their properties together into one deed.

The company 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.

Smith and Dove had acquired nearly every home on Baker Lane by 1918. They also owned the Timothy C. Foster farmhouse at 71 Essex St. and sub divided the lot behind that house and moved the old Howarth house off its former site, down Howarth Court, just opposite Baker Lane and then placed it at 18 Baker Lane.

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.

The Howarth house was purchased by Robert Y & Margaret D. Cairnie on May 13, 1927. The Carinie family owned the house for 61 years until 1988. Robert Cairnie was a mill worker and his daughter Christina Y. who later would own the house, worked for Tyer Rubber Co. Robert died on Jan. 1, 1951 and his widow Margaret D. b. 1880 sold the house to her daughter Christine in February 1951. Christine died in May 20, 1987 and her heirs sold her estate.

Peter F. Reilly and Francis P. Reilly purchased the property from the Cairnie estate on Jan. 8, 1988. Fran Reilly is a contractor in Andover and most likely he and son Peter did the renovation work on the property. It was sold in 1991 to Thomas & Linda Paolera.


Essex County Registry Deeds, Salem, MA
Essex Northern Registry Deeds, Lawrence, MA
Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. 75th Anniversary 1910
Andover’s Industrial Souvenir 1896 - A History of local businesses
Andover Advertiser
Andover Townsman
Salem Gazette – Sept. 8, 1837 - Oct. 27, 1837 – Advertisement section
Historical Sketches of Andover, S. Bailey 1880
Andover Valuation and directories
Andover Historical Society

Owners; original site - Howarth Court
James & Ann (Howarth) Cropper - 1856
Sarah F. F. Howarth - April 4, 1856 – b. 528 leaf 226 – 10 acres Salem deed
Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. - Aug. 4, 1885 – b. 141 p. 354 – right of way
Trustees of Ministerial Fund – July 29, 1890 – b. 108 p. 211 – mtg.
Oberlin B. Howarth – Sarah Howarth estate – Nov. 1898
Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. – Jan. 10, 1900 – b. 175 p. 41

Owners - Baker Lane -
Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co., about 1867-68
Smith & Dove Manufacturing Co. deed changes in 1864 and 1912
Smith & Dove Tenements,Inc. Walter Amesbury, Pres, - Feb. 21, 1927 - b. 529 p. 587
Robert Y. & Margaret D. Cairnie - May 13, 1927 - b. 532 p. 62
Margaret D. Cairnie, by will - Robert Y. died Jan. 1, 1951
Christine Y. Cairnie - Feb. 3, 1951 - b. 746 p. 476
Christine Y. Cairnie estate, Sandra Hill Demers, Extrx., died May 20, 1987 Probate #87P1770-E1 - heirs, Donna Cairnie Randoph, Brenda Hill Ampollone, Richard W. Hill
Peter F. Reilly and Francis P. Reilly - Jan. 8, 1988 - b. 2659 p. 7
Thomas R. & Linda Paolera - Oct. 10, 1991 - b. 3330 p. 207

Mrs. Dorothy Peircy on Baker Lane - painted mural in Ford's Coffee Shop on Main St. She lived at end of Baker Lane in 1950s - 60s.

Inventory Data:

StreetBaker Ln
PlaceAbbott Village
Historic DistrictAndover Village Industrial NRH District
Historic NameDr. James & Sarah F. Howarth House
Present Useresidence
Original Useresidence
Construction Datecirca 1830
Architectural StyleFederal
Foundationstone basement: 1/2 concrete,1/2 earth
Wall/Trimwood clapboards, coverd vinyl sided
Roofgable, asphalt
Major AlterationsThe house was remodeled in the 1980s, original window configuration reduced Vinyl siding over original wood clapboard Moved to site before 1927 by Smith & Dove Co.
Move Detailsapprox. 1918
Acreage9,060 sq. ft.; approx. frontage 65'
Settingresidential/professional offices
Map and parcel54-51
MHC NumberANV.55
Recorded byStack/Mofford, James Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date entered1975-77, 5/2014, 1/4/2015