Style: Spanish Colonial or Mission Style - additions enlarged the clubhouse in the 1980's, the style remains true to the Spanish design
Original owner: American Woolen Co.
The old Joshua Chandler Homestead was built on Chandler Road which began at Lowell Street across from Lincoln Street and extended all the way to River Road. The former Chandler farm was purchased by William M. Wood, president of the American Woolen Co. in March 1923 for the purpose of building a country club and golf course. When the Andover Country Club was opened in October 1926, the southern end of Chandler Road was closed off at Beacon St. The remaining south end became Chandler Circle with the old Chandler farmhouse, the end of terminus at #59, now in the middle of the fairways. The home was used as the grounds keeper's house for many years. With the development of all unused land on the perimeter of the links, the home was renovated into the business office space for the Club corporation. The address of the home is now 3 Crenshaw Lane (formerly 59 Chandler Circle)
Plans for the Andover Country Club were formerly announced to the public in the Andover Townsman on June 13, 1923. A meeting was held at the Shawsheen Restaurant by William M. Wood's appointed Country Club Committee before some 200 American Woolen Co. golfers. Parry C. Wiggin, a comptroller of the company was the chairman. Plans were presented for both the layout of all 18 holes and the club house. Wifred H. Follet was the architect of the layout of the course. "Mr. Follet gave an extremely interesting talk on the proposed course, showing the layout of each hole and the reasons therefor.....He spoke of how admirably the land is adapted for a course and said the the 18 holes were already there as his duties were simply to point them out and not mar them in the making."
The Civil engineer and surveyor was Andover's Dana W. Clark and the construction was under the direction of John R. Ness. The plan was to charter the club in January 1924 under the name "Shawsheen Country Club". The original idea was to have the main entrance into the club via William St. but after using Canterbury Street during construction the entrance was shifted to the current street. Membership was expected to be about 400 of which 350 would most likely be from employees of the American Woolen Co.
"A general discussion followed in which other proposed activities of the club were mentioned, and it developed that plans for tennis courts and a skating pond have already been accepted and that an ideal site for a toboggan slide is found on the property. The growing interest in winter sports in Andover and Lawrence is certain to be encouraged at the Shawsheen Country Club."
July 20, 1923 AT - p.8 - Shawsheen Golf Course - Eighteen Greens All Roughed Out. - .... Practically all of the 18 greens have been roughed out, and by the time they are seeded, either temporary or permanent pipes will have been laid in them. The fairways are all cleared and tractors are making fast progress with the ploughing.
The plans call for two dams, one of which is nearly finished, the other being left until late fall when seeding and work of that character cannot be done. This dam is for the second hole, a carry across 75 yards of water to a knoll, which will be one of the beauty spots of the course. Someone suggested to Mr. Follett that this expanse of water would be a mental hazard and he replied that in his case it was all too often a foregone conclusion.
On October 16, 1925 the golf course opened. AT - Oct. 23, 1925 p. 8 - Golf Course Opened - National Stars Officially Dedicated New Curse at Shawsheen Guilford and Ouimet Star -
A third golf club in the suburbs of Lawrence was formerly opened last Friday afternoon when the Shawsheen course of 18 holes was dedicated with a match between four of the leading amateurs of the state. Francis Ouimet of Woodland and Rodney W. Brown, the Country Club, Brookline, played Jesse P. Guilford, Woodland, and Parker W. Whittemore, the Country Club, Brookline. Ouimet and Brown won five up and four to play but Guilford turned in the best medal score of 75 for the 18 holes. ...Ouimet 77, Brown 79 and Whittemore 84.
A large gallery followed the players and most of the contingent saw the course for the first time. All were impresses with it and complimented the officials of The Andover Company, the promoters of the course.
It was laid out by the late W. H. Follett, and both greens and fairways were in excellent condition. It is nearly 6400 yards in length. The terrain is that of rolling, natural sort which suits the fancy of the golf architect. It is not an over trapped course, but one will find the rough difficult to get out of if the ball chances to wander from the fairways. The tees are well on the long sort, many having the triple terrace effect and the greens, possibly to some, are expansive. Although the par for the course is 72, this figure is bound to be shattered as the players become familiar with the course.
Guilford was the only one who had played it previously to Friday's match and had the honor to register the only eagle. He sank a 15-foot putt at the 16th hole, the ball having only sufficient strength to roll to the brim, hesitate, and then drop in.
The condition of the course and the excellence of the fairways can be judged from the fact that during the entire 18 holes note one of the players took a preferred lie. They considered the second and eleventh holes as the gems of the course and the seventh and sixteenth as the ones without any character.
[The course design that Follett presented in 1923 and published in the Townsman, is reversed in order of the links, the 2nd hole water hazzard is now the 11th hole.]
The clubhouse was completed the following spring. The Andover Townsman ran a picture of the architects drawing and the following description on January 15, 1926.
"The above sketch shows the Andover County Club, as it will appear when completed. Work is progressing satisfactorily and it is expected that the club house will be ready for occupancy by April 19, 1926.
The 18-hole, 6500 yard golf course was completed in the Fall of 1925 and has already been played on. It has been kept in splendid condition and should prove a welcome addition to New England's country clubs.
The basement of the clubhouse will contain men's lounge and grill, ample lockers, shower baths and kitchen. The first floor will consist of a lobby and main lounge, dining room and ladies' rest room. on the second floor it is planned to have twelve chambers for the use of members, also sleeping quarters for the club employees and showers and lockers for women members.
The building is to be stucco with red tile trimmings. The clubhouse is being built by C. S. Patten of Melrose and when completed the clubhouse and course will be one of the most attractive club properties in New England.
The purchase of the property included considerable material ready for erection and consequently the clubhouse will be completed at a most reasonable cost.
Applications for membership are being received in increasing numbers and it is expected that the club membership will be nearly filled by early spring, although there are still opportunities for golfers to become associated with the club, which has what will probably develop into on of the finest golf courses in New England."
The first Andover Country Club Tournament Championship took place in June 1926. There were 40 entries of which James H. Eaton took the cup.
AT - Sept. 24, 1926 - Hagen At Country Club. - National Professional Champion Sets a New Record in Dazzling Exhibition of Golf - Praises Andover Course. "Walter Hagen visited the Andover Country Club and gave a very large gallery a demonstration as to why he holds the title of National Profession Champion. .... he traveled the course with a 68 score, setting a new record which will probably stand for some time. .... Shooting six birdies and 10 pars accounted for the 68 score which might have been 65 had not the pill on three occasions rolled round the rim of the cup and then fallen away. Hagen complimented the Andover Club for their splendid course, saying it was one of the best he has yet played on.
Hagen made a sensational recovery from a clump of bushes just off the ninth fairway. He got a five where another would have taken a ten.
Win Knowlton had charge of the arrangements. It was at his suggestion a $50 prize was offered for the player who lowered the course record."
No one could have anticipated the resignation of William M. Wood as president of the AWCo. in 1924 or his death on February 2, 1926, but he did see his dream of a completed Shawsheen Village and a country club. The American Woolen Co., under the new president Andrew G. Pierce, began to liquidate all non essential properties of the company. In December 1925 the country club property was purchased by The Andover Company: Mitchell Johnson and Charles H. Kitchen, president and treasurer respectively. A loan was secured with the Bay State National Bank, Lawrence on June 1, 1931 for $57,000. on May 31, 1940 the Bay State National Bank foreclosed on the loan. The Andover Company now with Ellsworth H. Lewis & Foster C. Barnard released the property.
The Andover Associates, Inc.; Leon "Doc" Davidson & Edward "Eddie" J. Donohue would purchase the Club in June 2, 1949 and for the next 30 years remained the owners of record.
The Andover County Club was purchased by Yvon Cormier - Andover, Inc on Mar. 5, 1979. In the 1980s, the clubhouse received a complete renovation to the interior spaces and the building was enlarged. New entrance, dinning facilities and restaurant were added to the main floor function area. A pool and pool house have also been incorporated in the new design. Of the original 210 acres in 1923, only 26 now remain that function as the golf course and clubhouse. The remaining acres surrounding the fairways continue to be developed for single family homes and condominium townhouses. Many of the new streets created sport names of famous golfers.
It is interesting to note that in the early stages of construction there was a mention of "an ideal site for a toboggan slide" I don't believe it was ever built, but the fairway referred to was the sixth hole. For the resident's children in Andover, the 6th hole was the place to be in town during the winter after a new snow storm. The long hill provided a fast and sometimes hair-raising ride down the fairway on toboggan, sled or saucer. Some kids even tried downhill on skis, It was not unusual to find 50 to 100 folks enjoying the winter activities there on a weekend.
The Andover Country Club continues to be a favorite spot to host events. The annual Fireman's Ball, Robert Burns night, retirement parties, and wedding receptions are just a few of the thousands of functions held here since it opened. I wonder how many brides took a photo in front of the fireplace with the window in the middle of the chimney when it was part of the reception hall?
Essex County Registry Deeds, Salem, MA
Essex Northern Registry Deeds, Lawrence, MA
Andover Townsman: 13 Jul 1923 pg. 8, Country Club Planned designer of course Mr. Follet, contractor John R. Ness, 175 acres, 400 members, financing by American Woolen Co.
See also July 1932 "Architectural Record" for a sketch of an Andover Club House, proposed by Perry, Dean & Shaw for Dawson Associates"
Map #623 - Aug. 1925 - Three parcels - #1 = 127.1 acres, #2 + 55.1 acres and #3 = 31.4 acres - total 213.6 acres
Map #1427, #8547 and #8581 - development
Joshua Chandler, wife Dorcas Foster
Joshua Chandler Jr., wife Eliza Flint – died June 1885
Joshua Herbert & Eldesta G. Chandler –
Frederick N. Chandler – June 1, 1901 – b. 188 p. 252 – 8 parcels
Eldesta G. Chandler –Oct. 2, 1901 – b. 188 p. 252 – 8 parcels
Michael & Mary J. Carroll – Nov. 28, 1905 – b. 226 p. 527 – 7 parcels
Krikor Assoian – Jan. 8, 1907 – b. 241 p. 412
Hovannes Dagdigian – June 17, 1912 – b. 318 p. 77
Nishan Assoian & Dan Barberian – Dec. 31, 1919 – b. 413 p. 258
Nishan Assoian – Nov. 12, 1920 – b. 429 p. 81
American Woolen Co., Wm. M. Wood pres. – Mar. 16, 1923 – b. 474 p. 269
American Woolen Co., Andrew G. Pierce Pres. - 1924
Andover Company: Mitchell Johnson & Charles H. Kitchen – Dec. 4, 1925 – b. 518 p. 103
Bay State National Bank, Lawrence – June 1, 1931 – b. 559 p. 346 - mtg
Bay State National Bank, Lawrence – May 31, 1940 - b. 631 p. 595 - foreclosure
Andover Associates, Inc.; Leon "Doc" Davidson & Edward "Eddie" Jos. Donohue – June 2, 1949 – b. 723 p. 429
Cormier - Andover Associates, Inc - Mar. 5, 1979 - b. 1364 pgs. 743 & 745
Yvon Cormier Construction Corp. - June 8, 1982 - b. 1582 p. 51
Cormier - Andover, Inc. - Dec. 20, 1984 - b. 1908 p. 29
C. A. Investment Trust, Yvon Cormier, Gail E. Alcot, Trustees - Dec. 29, 1986 - b. 2395 p. 196
|Place||Shawsheen Village - Frye Village|
|Historic District||Not Applicable|
|Historic Name||Andover Country Club|
|Present Use||Andover Country Club - Golf|
|Original Use||Country Club|
|Construction Date||1924 - 1926|
|Architect/Builder||W. H. Follett/C. S. Patten|
|Roof||hip - tile|
|Outbuildings / Secondary Structures||2 long sheds,|
|Major Alterations||48.31 acres in 1976, enlarged and remodeled in 1980's|
|Map and parcel||87-4|
|Recorded by||Wendy Frontiero, James S. Batchelder|
|Organization||Andover Historical Society, Andover Preservation Commission|
|Date entered||Jan 1980, Oct. 22, 2015|