Colonial Revival - This home appears to have all the original features of the home when built.
Handsome entrance way and oriole window above. Corner coining, trellises and open screen porch.
Window boxes were once a feature on every home but only a few have survived today.
Shawsheen Village was named after the Native American name for the river Shawshin, which means Great Spring. Arundel Street takes its name from Arundel Castle, a restored medieval castle in Arundel, West Sussex, England. home to the Dukes of Norfolk. All the streets in Shawsheen Village were named for Castles & Cathedrals in Great Britton.
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 or 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.
Many streets in the village have a variety of different homes by different architects. Arundel Street is unique in that one architect is responsible for nearly every home on the street. Wood chose Addison LeBoutillier, an Andover resident, of the Boston firm Ripley & LeBoutillier. The firm had designed the new wing on the North School in West Andover in 1914, the new Punchard High School wing in 1916 (now Andover Town Offices) and the crowning jewel of the village, the beautiful Shawsheen School in 1923.
Architect Addison B. LeBoutillier was born in Utica, NY on July 5, 1872. He trained under O.K. Foote in Rochester, NY. He worked briefly with the Boston firm of Shepley, Rutan and Coolidge Addison is hired as a graphic designer for the Grueby Faience Co. of Boston (1898-1909). In 1905 LeBoutillier and family move to Andover, MA purchasing an old farmhouse at 10 Orchard St. Addison redesigns the house, later moves the barn and converts it into a new house for his family at 14 Orchard. LeBoutillier partners with Hubert Ripley as Ripley and LeBoutillier Architects, Boston.
A walk down Arundel Street does not disappoint. 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 and some have garages to the rear. Many have enclosed the open porches for additional rooms on the interiors. The wide street and mature landscape add to the charm of the neighborhood.
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 in 1926 were William H. & M. Helen Fitzgerald. William was a clerk with the American Woolen Co.
In 1943 Justin L. & Kathleen Rex are leasing the home. Justin is a chemist at Lowell Court. They purchased the home on Feb. 4, 1947. The Rex family owned for two years then selling to Lawrence B. & Martha N. Owen on Dec. 16, 1949.
Own held the property one year then sols to Ernest A. & Esther M. McComisky on Sept. 8, 1950. Ernest A. McComisky died on Jan. 23, 1957 and his wife Esther M. b. 1898 remained in the home until 1965. Esther is listed as a clerk in the 1961 directory.
Richard A. & Joye A. Meuse purchased the property on Dec. 10, 1965 followed by Alan E. & Jane K. Lounsbury on Dec. 10, 1973.
William A. & Judith F. Birtles became the fourth private owners on June 24, 1976. They continue as the owners of record in 2015 at 39 years the longest residents in the home. Both William & Judith are listed as teachers in the 1980 directory.
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 #55
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 - 15th parcel
Justin L. & Kathleen Rex - Feb. 4, 1947 - b. 694 p. 421
Lawrence B. & Martha N. Owen - Dec. 16, 1949 - b. 730 p. 336
Ernest A & Esther M. McComisky - Sept. 8, 1950 - b. 740 p. 114
Ernest A. McComisky estate, Esther M. McComisky, heir - Jan. 23, 1957
Richard A. & Joye A. Meuse - Dec. 10, 1965 - b. 1051 p. 91
Alan E. & Jane K. Lounsbury - Dec. 10, 1973 - b. 1233 p. 23
William A. & Judith F. Birtles - June 24, 1976 - b. 1284 p. 719
William A. & Judith F. Birtles - Feb. 27, 2002 - b. 6688 p. 298
|Place||Shawsheen Village - Frye Village|
|Historic District||Shawsheen Village NRH District|
|Historic Name||Justin & Kathleen Rex House|
|Construction Date||1922 - 1923|
|Source||ERDS, ENRDL, assessers' rec./style-njs|
|Architectural Style||Colonial Revival|
|Architect/Builder||Addison B. LeBoutillier|
|Roof||hip - slate|
|Map and parcel||36-69|
|Recorded by||Stack/Mofford, James Batchelder|
|Organization||Andover Preservation Commission|
|Date entered||1975 - 1977, 7/15/2015|