39 Porter Rd

Architectural Description: 

Craftsman style four square

Historical Narrative: 

Disbrow–Manning house
map/parcel 76-34 - This property was listed as #41 Porter Rd. and was reassigned the #39 in 2014 due to a sub-divison of the property.

The property at 39 & 41 Porter Road was once part of the Manning Farm at 37 Porter Road. In May 1914 the Manning estate was sub divided into 11 separate parcels for house lots. The heirs of the John H. & Lois A. (Batchelder) Manning estate (their children) began the process of dividing off the lots.

John Hart Manning was born Feb. 8, 1824 in Andover, son of Thomas & Sarah H. Manning. He married Lois A. Batchelder b. March 11, 1831 in North Reading, MA. John H was a farmer but died young at 44 years in Brookline, NH on April 19, 1868. The death register states John died of Brain Fever and was a Clergyman. John & Lois Manning had five children. Lois then raised the children taking in boarders to help meet expenses. Lois died April 10, 1910 and the estate went to the children. John & Lois are interred at South Church Cemetery as are many of the Manning ancestors.

Mary Alton Manning - b. 1851 - d. Mar. 20, 1941 - m. John Frank Keime
John Hart Manning - b. 1858 – d. May 25, 1945 - m. Mary F. Woodbridge
Martha Manning- b. 1860 – d. 1937 - m. Edward D. Disbrow
Frederick Wilbur Manning- b. 1862 – d. 1950 - m. Mary S. Delano
Caroline Thayer Manning- b. 1866 - d. 1952 - m. Edwin H. Whitehill

Martha (Manning) Disbrow, born April 26, 1860, daughter of John H. & Lois (Batchelder) Manning purchased parcel #1 lot 5 from the Manning family homestead farm. Martha married on June 21, 1892 at the Andover Theological Seminary (ATS) to Rev. Edward Delavan Disbrow. Edward was born in March 28, 1865 in Rosendale, Wisconsin, son of Martin L. & Hannah W. (Scofield) Disbrow. The ATS Alumni directory of 1909 lists Edward in the class of 1892; Yankton 1885-89, Chicago Theological Seminary 1889-90, Ordained Oct. 25, 1892, parishes; Carthage S.D. 1892-93, Pownal, ME 1894-95, First Church, Congregational, Hanover, MA 1895-1902, Farmington, NH 1902-07, Lysander, NY 1907-1915. Edward then became the minister of the Second Parish Congregational Church in West Boxford 1915-1925. He served on the Boxford School Committee in 1918 with Clarence Killam. From 1925 to about 1931 he was with Union Congregational Church in Westford, MA before returning to Andover in 1932.

Martha and Edward had two daughters, Elaine Manning Disbrow b. Dec. 5, 1895 d. Jan. 16, 1896, and Maud Bartlett Disbrow born on July 23, 1897 in Hanover, MA. At the time Martha acquired her parcel of land in 1914, she was living in Syracuse, NY. In 1932 they had returned to Andover and were living in the home at 41 Porter Road. The house, a four square with a hip roof was a popular design in the early 20th century especially in the Midwest and is often referred to as Prairie Style. The Disbrow house was probably built prior to World War I and rented as income property.

Their daughter Maud married in 1924 to Horace Newcomb Killam, son of Chester & Minnie (Tidd) Killam of Boxford. Horace was born March 16, 1896 was a musician, teacher and organist. Horace was a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music and connected with several churches in the area. In 1926 they were living in Haverhill, MA and Horace was the organist for Grace Methodist Church. In 1932 they had moved to Andover and were living with Maud’s parents in the house on Porter Road. They had three children; sons; Dwight D. b. July 19, 1926 and Horace N. Jr. b. Oct. 28,1928 and dau. Martha Manning b. May13,1944. At the time of the WWII draft registration, Horace listed his place of employment as organist at the towns of Georgetown, Groveland, Middleton and Topsfield, MA. Dwight graduated from Phillips Academy and Syracuse University and Horace Jr. from Punchard High School. and New England Conservatory of Music. Both sons followed in their father's occupation.

In the rear of the property was built a small amphitheater where the Killiam’s staged outdoor concerts and musicals such as Gilbert & Sullivan, during the summer. In May 1937 Maud became the owner of her parent’s home. Martha died on Feb. 24, 1937 and her father Edward died in 1947 in Los Angeles, CA.
The 1949 town directory lists Horace as Music Director and Maud as the Matron of the Andover Home for Aged at 4 Punchard Ave. The Killam's moved to Biddeford, Maine and the house was rented. Their daughter Martha of "Marti" graduated from Biddeford High School. Son Horace Jr. married in 1953 and lived in the house until it was sold in 1958. Maud died on Jan. 7, 1957 and her husband Horace died on March 29, 1964, both at Biddeford, Maine. All are interred at South Church Cemetery, Andover, MA. Their son Dwight was executor of his mother’s estate and the house was sold to Nathan & Rosalind G. Tufts Jr. in October 1958.

It is interesting to note that Martha (Manning) Disbrow's brother John, lived in the family homestead at #37 and her sister Caroline T. (Manning) Whitehill built a home on her share of the Manning estate at #33 Porter Rd. Both sister's appear to have used their homes as summer retreats until they retired to them in the 1930s.

Nathan & Rosalind G. Tufts Jr. remained for seven years in #41, selling in November 1965 to Frederick & Margaret Childs who have held ownership of the home for the past 48 years.

This property has recently been sub-divided (2014) through a Special Dimensional Permit to save this historic structure. Preservation Restrictions are now held with the Massachusetts Historical Commission on both #37 and now #39 (formerly #41) Porter Rd.
(Preservation Deed – April 23, 2015 – b. 14360 p. 51 – Mark & Julie P. Ratte – Map #17135 July 23, 2014)


Research; James Batchelder, Andover Preservation Commission Dec. 2013
Andover Vital Records
Northern Essex Registry of Deeds, Lawrence, MA
Andover Building Survey 1974-1978
National Register of Historic Places 1974
Andover Theological Seminary Alumni Dir. 1909
Andover Resident Directories
Boxford Resident Directories
Ancestry.com Disbrow, Killam, Manning
Federal Census, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940
(Preservation Deed – April 23, 2015 – b. 14360 p. 51 – Mark & Julie P. Ratte – Map #17135 July 23, 2014)

Lois B. Manning Estate - 37 Porter Rd.
Mary W. Keime of No. Dakota
Martha M. Disbrow - Aug. 11, 1914 - b. 345 p. 226
Martha M. Disbrow - Oct. 11, 1933 - b. 573 p. 270 - lot exchange
Edward & Martha Disbrow, Maud B. D. Killiam - May 3, 1937 - b. 606 p. 386
Maud B. D. Killiam estate, Maud died Jan. 7, 1957
Dwight D. Killiam, Extr.
Nathan & Rosalind G. Tufts Jr. - Oct. 8, 1958 - b. 881 p. 399
Frederick & Margaret Childs - Nov. 4, 1965 - b. 1047 p. 476
Childe Realty Trust - Apr. 5, 1991- b. 3237 p. 193 - 3 acres.
Childe Realty Trust, Paul G. Childs & Ellen Arvidson, Trustees
Fieldstone Meadows Development Corp. July 14, 2014 – b. 13921 p. 74
Mark & Julie P. Ratte – Dec. 9, 2014 – b. 14065 p. 212

Andover Zoning Board of Appeals #Z-14-45 - Sept. 3, 2014 – b. 13998 p. 194
Andover Conservation Commission -Non disturbance zone – Sept. 5, 2014 –
b. 13895 p. 274 & 292

See maps #174 - Manning estate 1914
map #5365 lot C - Oct. 1965 – Tufts Sub-division
Plan map - 17136 - July 23, 2014

Inventory Data:

StreetPorter Rd
PlacePhillips District
Historic DistrictNot Applicable
Historic NameDisbrow–Manning house
Present Useresidence
Original Useresidence
Construction Datecirca 1915
Architectural StyleCraftsman/Bungalow
Outbuildings / Secondary StructuresClay Tennis court
Major Alterations2014 - 2015 two car attached garage Preservation Deed Restriction 2014 - Massachusetts Historical Commission
Map and parcel76-34
Recorded byJames S. Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date enteredOct. 3, 2014