279 North Main Street

Architectural Description: 

Unique stone construction of Bungalow house
Classical adaption of front porch entrance -
Some suggest Addision LeBoutillier may have been architect - not confirmed

Historical Narrative: 

The exact year that this home was built is still in question. Only three houses, #269, #275 and #277 are visible east of North Main St. on a map of Andover in Frye Village. The 1900 Andover Valuation Schedule lists #269 and the Gardner’s house #275. In 1910 Valuation of houses owned by Ellen A. Wood are numbered #269, #275 and #279. Most likely the house listed then as #279 was the Bungalow next door now #277 built in 1901.

The unusual stone construction and highly styled front porch and entrance suggest that it was probably constructed in the early stages of the building of Shawsheen Village1918-1921. The stone construction of the Balmoral Street bridge, Shawsheen River embankments, the Boys Club House and dam gate house all embrace the same field stone building construction style. The 1920 valuation record of listed property, owned by Wm. M. Wood, is one house, Stone, North Main St. value $5000. No number has been noted but the next listing is the 4½ acre parcels purchased by Wood from Poor and Morrison to build these homes on. Ellen Ayer Wood, wife of William M. Wood, owned the property and the Stone Cottage continues to remain with the Wood family estate. Muriel Prindle Wood wife of Cornelius Wood became the owner on April 7, 1921.

The first tenant of the house was most likely Harold Steward Cates and his wife Irene B. (Hadley) Cates. They were long term tenants of the “Stone Cottage” for over forty years. In the 1920 & 1926 Andover directories Harold was a Gardener employed by Mr. Wood to work at “Arden”. The large 60 acre estate had a working farm, formal gardens, large hedges and a huge green house that supplied fresh flowers year round. It has been said that Harold also had charge of the plantings in Shawsheen Village. Harold & Irene had one daughter Alice M., born in 1921. Harold was born in Andover October 17, 1894, son of Abraham L. & Carrie (Steward) Cates. He graduated from Punchard High in 1913, was a star athlete of the football team, captain his senior year. Harold then attended Essex Agricultural School in Danvers. He served in World War I. At the time of his draft registration in 1917 he was single, lived at 47 Whittier St. and gave his occupation as farming for Mr. Wm. M. Wood. Harold served in France with the 302 Machine Gun Battalion 76th Divisions later transferred to the 41st. He attended the AEF University in Beaune, France, taking a 3 month course in Agriculture. On his return Harold worked for the Wood family the remainder of his life retiring about 1964 as the Property Superintendent at Arden. Harold died on December 8, 1966. Irene and daughter Alice then moved to Locke Street in 1967. Irene died on May 29, 1972. Alice lived with her parents most of her life. She became an I.B.M operator and later a tax examiner. Alice died in May 1990. The Cates family attended the South Church. All are interred at Spring Grove Cemetery, Andover, MA.

Ernest & Helga Winkler followed the Cates in 1968. Winkler was also gardener from Lawrence, MA. Also sharing the house was Elwyn N. Davis b. 1917 a teacher and son Neil C. Davis a student. In 1969 Dwayne & Leonna Devilbiss boarded with Winkler and Davis. Dwayne was a cinematographer and Leonna a salon manager. John P. & Shirley C. Clift rented for two years 1970 - 1971. John Clift b. 1947 was a salesman. Shirley b. 1948 was a housewife.
1973-1975 Robert M. & Elinor R Noel lived in the stone cottage relocating from Ohio. Robert work for the Division of Public Safety and Elinor was a store manager. In 1975 their son Michael D. Noel is listed at college. For the next 35 years from 1976-2011 the house remained vacant. The Wood family continued to maintain the property. The house was restored after the May 2010 Mother’s Day flooding in Andover. Mrs. Roseland Wood, wife of Cornelius A. Wood Jr. is now the Trustee of Sasha Associates, LLC and has made the home available for the Headmaster’s family, of the Esperanza Academy, the private middle school for girls in Lawrence, MA.


See “Plan of Land in Shawsheen Andover, MA known as the “Main St. Lot” Owned by Phillips Corporation - Surveyed by John Franklin C.E. April 1926” registered as Map Plan #643 at Northern Essex Registry of Deeds. Lot of Muriel P. Wood between lots #10 & #11.

Researched by James S. Batchelder – Andover Preservation Commission June 2013
Andover Townsman & Andover Advertiser
Andover Building Survey Form 1974-1976
Federal Census 1900 - 1940
former Contacts James Darylple in Darling Real Estate Bldg. on Wood estate - he is their representive. Dr. Edward Roddy, History dept., Merrimack College, North Andover.

Thomas C. Foster
William Poor - Sept. 20, 1833 - b. 284 lf 247 Salem deeds
Mary M. Poor - Aug. 1, 1895 - b. 141 p. 396 Lawrence NED
Hannah A. Poor - Aug. 1, 1895 - b. 141 p. 396
John Morrison - Aug. 18, 1899 - b. 171 p. 242
Ellen Ayer Wood - Sept. 12, 1899 - b. 172 p. 150
William M. Wood
Muriel Prindle Wood - Apr. 7, 1921 - b. 438 p. 389 [lot #2]
Edward T. Roche - Aug. 17, 1927 - b. 535 p. 407 [p. 409 lot #5]
Muriel P & Cornelius A. Wood - July 7, 1931 - b. 559 p. 533
Coriole Realty Trust (Wood Family) - May 2, 1932 - b. 564 p. 550
Cornelius A. Wood Jr. - via mother’s Will #344793 – 1951 & father’s Will #315067 - 1926
Sasha Associates Trust (Wood Family) - Feb. 13, 1981 - b. 1489 p. 62
Sasha Associates Trust LLC - Apr. 4, 2011 - b. 12452 p. 70

Inventory Data:

StreetNorth Main St
PlaceShawsheen Village
Historic DistrictNot Applicable
Historic NameStone Cottage - Cates House
Present Useresidence
Construction Date1920 early 20th century
Architectural StyleColonial Revival
Wall/Trimstone and wood
Major AlterationsComplete interior renovation in 2010
Acreageless than one acre; 95' approximate frontage, 21,770 sq. ft.
Map and parcel36-103
Recorded byStack/Mofford; James Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date entered1975-77 updated 2013