5 Smithshire Estates

Architectural Description: 

Colonial Revival home, the main body 24' x 34' a converted barn or carriage house., gable end pediments, repeated on front gable and porch and triple columns support the entrance porch roof are classical elements. A handsome front door with side lights add an elegant and welcoming entrance way.

Historical Narrative: 

One of two barns on Peter Smith's estate "Forest Hill" formerly at 53 Shawsheen Road. The mansion house was sited on lots #1 and #3 Beech Circle. The 1906 map of Andover clearly shows all the buildings on the estate. This home does not have an X through it suggesting that it was already converted into a residence for workers on the estate.

The former Peter Smith estate "Forest Hill" was once the farm of Elijah J. Herrick in 1830 which was purchased by Alexander Winning on June 1, 1839 for $3255. The farm was 26 acres that stretched from Stevens St. to Lincoln St. and contained a dwelling house and barn. We now believe that the cottage house at 6 Smithshire Estates to be the Herrick - Winning house that was moved to that location from 63 Shawsheen Rd. in 1954. The cottage occupied the entrance into the new development. A map of Esther Smith Estate Apr. 1953 - Oct. 1953 (#2807) clearly shows the original location of the house and the former two barns which were converted into dwelling houses by 1930 - 1931.

Alexander Winning was born in 1818 and married on April 25, 1839 to Mary Ann Murray of Charlestown, MA b. June 18, 1808 dau. of John & Mary (Hayes) Murray. They had two daughters; Mary Elizabeth and Martha Caroline. Winning sold his farm to Peter Smith on April 26, 1847 and moved to Osgood St.

Peter Smith was born Sept. 21, 1802 in Brechin, Angus Co., Scotland brother to John Smith and youngest son of Peter & Jennett (Middleton) Smith. Their father, a carpenter, died on Aug. 1, 1810. Oldest son James, age 17, would provide for his mother and siblings. John Smith b. May 19, 1796 was sent out at age 13 to earn a living as a cotton weaver. In 1816 John came to America, first to Waltham, MA, then to Plymouth, MA where his brother Peter joined him. They came to Andover in 1824. John Smith with business partners Warren Richardson and Joseph Faulkner, who owned water rights in Frye Village, (now Shawsheen Village), built a cotton machine manufacturing shop named John Smith & Co. on the east side of the river.

Peter worked with his brother John and married Aug. 28, 1824 in Plymouth to Rebekah Bartlett b. 1804 dau. of John & Polly (Morton) Bartlett. Peter & Rebekah had five children: Jennette M. bpt. July 23, 1826, Rebecca Bartlett b. May 29, 1827, James Byers b. Oct. 19, 1828, Mary B. b. Jan 1, 1831 and Ellen Bartlett b. May 19, 1833. They first lived in Frye Village.

Both business partners died, Mr. Richardson on Nov. 24, 1829 age 35 and Mr. Faulkner age 48 on Aug. 5, 1831. John sent Peter to Scotland to enlist his friend John Dove to join them in Andover. Dove was a machinist and worked with Peter in the Flax mills. Dove arrived in 1833 and persuaded John Smith to begin producing linen thread from flax. In 1836 the Smith & Dove Co. became the first manufacturer of flax in America. The success of the venture made the men the wealthiest families in Andover by the mid 1800’s.

Peter Smith’s wife Rebecca died on May 20, 1833. Peter would remarry on June 4, 1835 at West Parish Church to Esther H. Ward b. 1806. Peter & Esther had seven children: Esther Humphrey b. Oct. 19, 1836, Lucretia Ward b. Dec. 1, 1839, Anne Leighton b. May 21, 1841, Peter Dove b. Aug. 24, 1842, Susanna Ward b. Dec. 16, 1843, Elizabeth Miller b. Sept. 15, 1845, and Benjamin Franklin b. May 13, 1849.

With the shift of flax production to Abbott Village in the 1840’s the Winning farm purchase in 1847 on Shawsheen Rd. would prove a perfect location between the mills and the West Parish Church. It is not known who the architect or builders were for Forest Hill mansion but it was completed prior to 1850. The Andover Valuation schedule 1850 lists Peter Smith’s; Dwelling house $6500, barn and other building $500, 43½ acre Farm, Farm house, Barn and sheds $3000. = $10,000. Farm stock and Carriage $544, Bank stock $450, Rail Road stock $900 = $1894.

Peter Smith died on July 6, 1880 and will the estate, house and contents to his wife Esther W. for the remainder of her life with an allowance of $4000 per year. He also provided money for the continued maintenance of the estate including a gardener who occupied the cottage house. Upon her death the entire estate would go to his son Peter Dove Smith. Esther died on May 22, 1889. Peter D. Smith was born Aug. 24, 1843. Peter served during the Civil War and married on Nov. 7, 1867 to Abby Jane Chandler b. May 21, 1840. Peter D. and Abby had four daughters: Lucretia Ward b. Aug. 31, 1868 d. Sept. 1868, Esther Ward b. Nov. 11, 1870, Elizabeth Miller b. Apr. 19, 1876, and Mary b. Oct. 31, 1878.

Peter died Jan. 16, 1911 and will the estate to his wife Abby and his three daughters. Abby died Aug. 2, 1921 and his sister Susanna, who had a life tenancy in the house died in Nov. 1, 1922. The three daughters inherit the estate and quit claimed to sister Esther Ward Smith in 1923. The 1926 directory list Mary (Smith) Churchill at #53 Shawsheen Rd., the mansion, and Esther W. Smith in the Cottage at #63 Shawsheen. In 1930 two new numbers 59 and 61 appear in the listings. As the numbers were all adjusted after the war #59 is now #69 Shawsheen and #61 is now #5 Beech Circle.

In 1931 Kate G. Menzies age 76, at home and Katherine M. Pickney age 57 at home, are living at 61 and were the year before. in 1934 Catherine M. Milne age 44 has joined Kate and Katherine.
1935 Kenneth W. Barnard, wife Sallie S. occupy the house. Kenneth is the Superintendent of the Pacific Mills in Lawrence. The lived here until 1940. Jerome Cross Jr. and wife Margaret are here in 1941, Jerome was VP of Cross Coal Co. in Lawrence and Andover. Arthur G. & Ruth C. Curtin followed Cross in 1947, Arthur was in Electrical Sales. In 1953 Rev. Levering & May Reynolds reside here. Rev Reynolds was the minister of Free Christina Church from 1944-1957.

Esther W. Smith died on Oct. 15, 1952 and her estate went to her two sisters Elizabeth Clarke and Mary Churchill. They sold the home to Elmer Thomas & Eileen M. Churchill on May 19, 1955. Churchill held two years then sold to Thomas J. & Marion A. Delaney on June 25, 1957. Thomas J. Delaney died on Apr. 16, 1964. Marion A. Delaney held another four years selling to Lees S. & Patricia F. Brown on May 28, 1968.

Shirley R. & Marjorie L. Belloir purchased the property on Sept. 28, 1972 and continue as owners of record in 2018 now 46 years.


Essex County Registry Deeds, Salem, MA
Essex Northern Registry Deeds, Lawrence, MA
Andover Village Industrial NRH District walking tour brochure.
Map plans: #1590 Dec. 1943, #2498 - 1952, #2670 - Feb. 1952, #2807 - Apr. 1953 Smithshire Estate

Elijah L. Herrick - 1830 - 1838
Samuel Abbot - Apr. 4, 1838 - b. 310 leaf 17
Alexander Winning - June 1, 1839 - b. 313 leaf 221 - $3255
Peter Smith, wife Esther W. - Apr. 26, 1847 - b. 382 leaf 213 - two parcels w/blds
Peter Smith estate, heir Esther W. - July 6, 1880 - Probate
Esther W. Smith estate, heir Peter D. Smith - May 22, 1889 - from father's will
Peter Dove Smith, wife Abby C. - May 1889
Peter Dove Smith estate, heir Abby J. C. Smith - Jan. 16, 1911 - Probate
Edward A. Taft Jr. - Dec. 17, 1910 - b. 299 p. 424-431 - nine parcels
Abbie J. C. Smith - Dec. 17, 1910 - b. 299 p. 431-436 - nine parcels
Peter Dove Smith estate, heir Abby J. C. Smith - Jan. 16, 1911 - Probate
Abby J. C. Smith estate, Ed H. McDermott, Extr. - Aug. 2, 1921, heirs, Esther W., Elizabeth M., Mary
Heirs; Esther W. Smith, Eliz. M. Clarke, Mary S. Churchill - Feb. 10, 1923 - b. 475 p. 401
Esther W. Smith - Feb. 10, 1923 - b. 475 p. 402
Esther W., Elizabeth M. Smith, Mary Churchill - Apr. 30, 1924 - b. 501 p. 272 quit claim
Esther W. Smith - April 30, 1924 - b. 50
Esther W. Smith estate, Oct. 15, 1952 - Stephen A. McClellan, Extr. Dec. 18, 1953 - #239178
Mary Churchill McClennan & Elizabeth M. S. Clarke heirs - May 19, 1955 - b. 819 p. 168-169 quit claim
Elmer Thomas & Eileen M. Churchill - May 19, 1955 - b. 819 p. 167
Thomas J. & Marion A. Delaney - June 25, 1957 - b. 856 p. 458
Thomas J. Delaney estate, heir Marion A. Delaney - Apr. 16, 1964 - Probate
Lees S. & Patricia F. Brown - May 28, 1968 - b. 1106 p. 442
Shirley R. & Marjorie L. Belloir - Sept. 28, 1972 - b. 1203 p. 146

Inventory Data:

StreetSmithshire Estates
PlaceWest Parish - West Andover
Historic DistrictNot Applicable
Historic NameForest Hill Barn
Present Useresidence
Original Usebarn
Construction DateMid 19th century
SourceERDS, NERDL, style,
Architectural StyleColonial Revival
Outbuildings / Secondary Structuresrear attached garage
Major Alterations1929 - 1930 conversion to residence.
Acreage0.646 acres
Map and parcel54-78
Recorded byB. Thibault, James S. Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Historical Society, Andover Preservation Commission
Date entered3/13/91, 8/14/2018