50 Morton Street

Architectural Description: 


See 56 Morton Street for idea of what original structure may have looked like

Historical Narrative: 

50 Morton St. 0.541 acre John & Mary Stack House
Morton St., east of Main St. was first known as Pike Street or Pike Lane, then Green St. on 1872 maps. Pike and East Pike St. appear on earlier deeds. Morton St. originally began at School St. and ended at Main Street. Morton St. was extended to include Pike in the late 1890’s. Pike also was nick-named "Ram Cat Alley" by local old-timers. The Pike Soap Company was located near the intersection of Bartlet St. and later further east on the south side of the road. It was formerly believed some of the houses on the east end of Morton St. were built by Willard Pike for his employees. Recent research disproves this claim. Most of the modest homes were built for Irish emigrants between 1854 – 1860.
George H. French was a merchant in Andover when he purchased 10 acres 9 rods of land from Phillips Academy on Mar. 8, 1854. The parcel’s south border on Pike Street extended down into what is now the “Playstead”. French subdivided the property into house lots along the street. Each lot sold contained a caveat that the new owner had to build a fence along the property line and maintain their half. George H. French sold this lot John Stack – Apr. 11, 1856

John Stack was born Jan. 1, 1822 in Churchtown, Co. Cork, Ireland, and married in February 1849, Killury, Co. Kerry to Mary Barry b. abt. 1827. John immigrated to Boston on July 15, 1850. John & Mary had six children: Ellen bpt. June 9, 1851, Thomas bpt. Dec. 8. 1853, John Jr. b. Oct. 11, 1855, Mary bpt. Apr. 22, 1857, Michael b. Dec. 18, 1858 and Elizabeth b. Jan. 10, 1861. John was a stone mason. The 1860 Andover Valuation lists John Stack; 1 acre, House & land $575.
John Stack sold his home to his next door neighbor John Lynch on May 25, 1869 for $950. John Lynch had also purchased a lot (#48) from French on May 15, 1856 and had his home built. John Lynch was born in Ireland in June 1821 and immigrated in 1851. John married in 1846 to Jane Ring b. 1828 in Ireland. They had eight children; five survived. Catherine b. 1848 Ire., John D. Jan. 1852 Andover, Morris b. 1853, Mary J. b. 1856, Peter b. Mar. 1858 – d. Feb. 20, 1863, Jeremiah b. 1862 - d. Feb. 23, 1863 and Peter b. 1864.

John & wife Jane R. moved into this home (#50) and their son John D. and his wife Jane D. raised their family in the Lynch homestead at #48. In July 1877 the deed was transferred through Mary Lynch to John's wife Jane R. Lynch. Jane later sold #48 on Jan. 24, 1893 to Jane D. Lynch, wife of her son John D. for $700.
Jane R. held the property until her death on Nov. 28, 1900 at which time daughters Mary (Lynch) Galloway of Melrose and Lydia Lynch, wife of son William E., inherit the property. Mary quit claimed the deed to Lydia on Sept 9, 1900. John Lynch Sr. died the following year 1901. Mary and William held for five years then sold to John S. Ronan on June 22, 1906.

John S. Ronan was born in Ireland in April 1858 son of Stephen & Elizabeth (Linehan) Ronan. His family immigrated in 1863. John married on April 20, 1884 to Elizabeth Teresa Williamson b. Oct. 1860 in Andover, dau of Francis “Frank” & Margaret (Donovan) Williamson. The Williamsons lived at #54 Morton St. and the Ronans at #56. John & Lizzie had six children; Stephen James b. Feb. 28, 1885 - d. Aug. 4, 1885, Annie C. b. July 23,1887, Elizabeth b. Apr. 1, 1889, Esther b. May 2, 1891, John Francis b. Dec.30, 1893 and Francis Daniel b. May 18, 1896.

John is listed as a Teamster on the Academy farm. All their daughters worked at Tyer Rubber Co. and never married. Son John F. was a machinist married June 30, 1919 in Lawrence, to Mary F. Stanton b. Nov. 20, 1893 in Amesbury, dau. of Peter & Margaret (Donohue) Stanton. They had two sons Francis b. 1921 and John Joseph b. Feb. 18, 1925. Sadly Mary died on Oct. 10, 1925 in Lawrence. John’s brother Francis D. Ronan became a Priest in OSA at St. Lawrence, O’Toole Church, in Lawrence, MA. He entered the novitiate at Villanova, PA in 1917, was ordained in the Cathedral of Philadelphia in 1922.

John’s wife Elizabeth “Lizzie” died on June 5, 1925. John S. died in 1929. The estate went to the Ronan children. In 1930 census Annie C. Ronan is listed has the head of the household. Lizzie and Esther continue to work for Tyer Rubber Co. Their brother John F. a widower, unable to work and lives with them with his two young sons. John F. died in 1931. Elizabeth died 1938.
The 1940 Census lists Esther Ronan age 48, her nephew John Joseph. age 15 and her brother Rev. Frank D. age 43 Mission clergyman. John Joseph graduated from Central Catholic High School in Lawrence and served in WWII. Rev. Frank died in Cambridge, NY on May 3, 1948.
Esther and her nephew continued to live in the house. Esther died on Sept. 24, 1985. John J. & Eleanor D. took ownership on Sept. 25, 1972. John J. died Nov. 5, 1996. The fourth generation of Ronan ownership was John S. and wife Mary Anne Ronan on Aug. 6, 1997.

The Ronan family heirs had been owners of the property for 114 years. The house was sold on Sept. 4, 2020 to Richard J. Aversa & Christopher C. Cowie developers, who plan to make extensive renovations to the property and barn.


Essex County Registry of deeds, Salem
Essex, Northern Registry Deeds, Lawrence
Andover Maps. 1855, 1872, 1888, 1906
Andover Resident Directories
Andover Valuation Schedules, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1900
Andover Vital Statistics
Andover Townsman Obituaries.
Ancestry.com. Family Genealogies, US & State Census records,

Trustees of Phillips Academy
George H. French – Mar. 8, 1854 – b. 491 leaf 123 – 10a 9 rods
John Stack – Apr. 11, 1856 – b. 530 leaf 114 #50
John Lynch – May 25, 1869 – b. 777 leaf 126 - $950 w/blds - #50 Morton
John Lynch - May 15, 1856 - b. 531 leaf 190 - $200 lot #48 Morton
Mary Lynch - July 5, 1877 - b. 48 p. 478 (pg. in error)
Jane Lynch, husband John - Sept. 6, 1877 - b. 48 p. 87 - two lots - 120 sq. rods.
Jane Lynch - Jan. 24, 1893 - b. 123 p. 311
Jane Lynch estate, Nov. 28, 1900, Lynch heirs.
Mary (Lynch) Galloway, heir quit claim
Lydia A. Lynch, wife of William E. Lynch - Sept. 9, 1900 - b. 197 p. 139
John S. Ronan, wife Elizabeth T. - June 22, 1906 - b. 233 p. 397
John S. Ronan estate, 1929 heirs; Annie C, Lizzie, Esther, John F. and Francis D.
John J. Ronan & Frank D. Ronan - heirs - June 15, 1956 - b. 884 p. 358 - quit claim
Esther Ronan - June 15, 1956 - b. 884 p. 358
John J. & Eleanor D. Ronan - Sept. 25, 1972 - b. 1203 p. 134
John J. Ronan estate, Eleanor D. Ronan heir - Nov. 5, 1996 - Probate
John S. Ronan & Eleanor D. Ronan - Apr. 4, 1988 - b. 2705 p. 338
John S. & Mary Anne Ronan - Aug. 6, 1997 -b. 4813 p. 215
Richard J. Aversa & Christopher C. Cowie – Sept. 4, 2020 – b. 16478 p. 345

Inventory Data:

StreetMorton St
PlaceAndover Center
Historic DistrictAndover Historic Building Survey
Historic NameJohn & Mary Stack House
Present Useresidence
Original Useresidence
Construction Date1856 -1857
Architectural StyleOther
Foundationstone & granite
Wall/Trimvinyl siding
Roofasphalt - gable
Outbuildings / Secondary Structures20th c barn/garage
Major Alterationsenclosed porch and new rear section
Acreage0.541 acre
Map and parcel40-76
Recorded bySean Croft, James Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Historical Society - Andover Preservation Commission
Date entered6/11/91, 4/15/2015, 7/24/2021