84 Main Street
Site of History 🛈The Site of History tag is given to properties that were lost before this building survey was undertaken.

Architectural Description: 

Georgian Revival

Historical Narrative: 

Time line:
1856 - 1955 Residence
1992 Fleet Bank

84 Main Street – Bank Building built 1955
Site of the former Gilbert Barnard - Samuel M. Downs House

The Colonial style bank building was designed by W. H. Jones & Son, architects from Melrose, MA. Construction began in May 1955 for the $150,000 branch office for the former Bay State Merchants Bank of Lawrence. It was completed in November and a formal open house was held on Saturday November 26th. It was reported that the building in the rear of the property would be removed. Possibly the Abbott - Odlin house was used by construction workers until completion of the project. The Merchant’s bank, later named the Bay State National Bank, operated at this location for over two decades before merging with the New Bank of New England in the 1980’s. This bank was purchased through the FDIC by the Fleet Bank in 1991. It was sold to “The Savings Bank” of Wakefield, MA in 1996.

Prior to the bank a Victorian home with an attached barn occupied the site. Built in 1856 by Gilbert Barnard, Barnard purchased the land for $337.50 in August 1853 from Samuel Abbott and William Abbot. An additional parcel to Barnard from Joseph Richardson was purchased on Nov. 17, 1854 “which was not conveyed to Nancy M. Griffin” who lived next door. Gilbert Barnard died at age 39 yrs 10m on June 5, 1858, long obit. 6/19). Aug. 28, 1858 Andover Advertiser - AA – Public Auction on Tuesday next Aug. 31, 2 pm at the house of the late Gilbert Barnard… Items sold at the auction included; an excellent family horse, 8 years old, 1 buggy, 1 wagon, 1 chaise, 1 sleigh, hay wagon, horse cart and harness. The estate was listed for sale on March 12, 1859 AA. A Desirable Residence, situated on Main St., belonging to the estate of Gilbert Barnard. The House is modern, having been built three years since, in the most thorough manner. Connected with the house is an excellent Stable, Carriage House, and about three quarters of an acre of Land, well stocked with choice Fruit Trees…and is one of the most desirable places in Andover.
March 12, 1859 AA – Gilbert Barnard Estate For Sale.

The property was deeded to James S. Dodge on June 15, 1860. Nathaniel Swift was the executor of Barnard’s estate. Dodge was in business with co-partner Horace P. Beard under the name of Dodge & Beard at Swift’s building at 10 Essex Street. March 10, 1855 AA – New firm of Dodge & Beard – purchased C. G. McNeil’s stock of Goods, consisting of Dry Goods, Groceries, Farming tools, Grass & Garden Seeds, Bondi Common & Fancy Crackers. James S. Dodge & Horace P. Beard. The partnership continued for eleven years before Beard bought out Dodge in April 1866.

Moses A. Dow and wife Elizabeth T. of Charlestown, MA purchased the property for $4750 from Dodge on March 9, 1864 and remained owners for two years. Samuel D. Warren of Waltham acquired the property from Moses A. Dow at public auction on May 28, 1866. Warren paid $5675 for nearly one acre of land with house & barn, for his sister, Mrs. S. E. Mason to live in.

In 1878 Samuel Morse Downs purchased the home which then became known as the Downs House. Professor Downs was a master musician, composer and music teacher for nearly 50 years at both Abbot and Bradford Academies. His wife Annie Sawyer Downs was a nationally published writer & poetess. Both shared great intellects and brilliant careers. Annie died in Dec. 1903 and Samuel on Oct. 30, 1909. Both are buried at Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Concord, MA.

Ernest W. Pitman who resided next door at #76 Main Street acquired the Down’s estate in May 1910. Pitman a prominent contractor in the area, built the Wood Mill in Lawrence and several other large mills in New England. He was a director of the Merchants’ Trust Co., president & treasurer of the E. W. Pitman Construction Co., president of the Wilson Building Moving Company and a director of the Taxi Service Co. of Boston & the Boston Garage Co. Ernest had a wife Alice E. and one daughter Ernestine. He died tragically at age 45 on Aug. 27, 1912.

The former Barnard-Downs property was sold to Myerscough & Buchan, co-partners of an automotive garage in Aug. 1914. A deed restriction prevented the property from being used for any purpose other than residential for 20 years. “No additional buildings, or parts there of shall be erected on any part of the front of the lot, no dwellings for more than two families shall be erected on any part of the lot during the 20 years.”
We do know that the Abbot-Odlin House at #90 was moved and converted into a two family in 1913 when Myerscough & Buchan built their new garage at #90. It appears that the house was moved twice, first directly behind the new garage and later in the early 1920’s, to behind the former Downs home. A two family home constructed at the rear of the property after 1920 became #3 & #4. Evidence suggests it may have been the original Barnard carriage house moved to end of the lot. The dimensions of the barn match that of the new house and the roof line is identical to the barn in a period photo. The Abbot-Odlin home was then moved over on to the former carriage house location.

The new created private way would become known as "Main Street Terrace" in 1922. By July 14, 1922 the Townsman notes a Mrs. George Dick of Main Street terrace at this address. The 1923 directory lists Mr. George & Madaline E. Dick at #3.
Buchan may have developed the property before he sold it on Sept. 19, 1921, but it appears that Frederick Smith was probably responsible for the additional properties added to the lot.

This site has also been numbered in resident directories as; #84, #84r, #86 Main St. and the Abbot - Odlin house as #1 & #2 and the rear duplex as #3 & #4 Main Street Terrace by 1927. Several families lived in these rental properties to the rear of #84. The Chadwick & Whitcomb families resided here from 1926 – 1955.

The Downs house had become a rental property after Pitman’s purchase in 1912. Converted to a two family residence it was numbered 84 & 86 and used for offices by doctors & dentists and apartments through the remaining years. From 1930 - 1937 dentist, Nathaniel Stowers lived here and in 1939 Dr. Stanley Chart, a physician.

In 1941 it was occupied by the Ivar & Monimia Sjostrom family. Daughter Olga was a music & piano teacher and son Ivar L. Jr. an organist in Newton. Isabelle A. & Lucille C. Rainville operated a hairdresser shop at 86 in the mid 1930s and Ernest & Gloria Verette owners of “Gloria Lunch” on Main Street also resided here in 1932. In 1953 Fred H. Smith owner of the property, now retired, was living at #86.

When the bank purchased the property in 1955 the former Downs house was razed first and the new foundation for the bank went in. The last house on the terrace #3- 4 was purchased by the Karl & Geneva Killorian and was moved south up the hill to #150 Main Street in May. The Abbot-Odlin house was the last house to be razed, possibly remained until the bank was completed in November 1955.


Essex County Registry Deeds, Salem, MA
Essex Northern Registry Deeds, Lawrence, MA
Directories: 1926, 1932, 1943, 1953
Maps: 1852, 1872, 1884, 1896, 1906, 1930
Andover Advertiser
Andover Townsman

Samuel Abbott Extr. & William Abbott - Oct. 12, 1852 - by Will
Gilbert Barnard - Aug. 12, 1853 - b. 505 lf. 29 Salem Deeds - land
Gilbert Barnard - Nov. 17, 1854 - b. 505 lf. 30 from Jos. Richardson - land
Barnard - died June 5, 1858 - Nathaniel Swift executor of estate
James S. Dodge - June 15, 1860 - b. 609 lf. 155 Salem Deeds
Moses A. & Eliz. T. Dow - May 9, 1864 - b. 663 lf. 204 Salem Deeds
Samuel D. Warren of Waltham - May 28, 1866 - b. 707 p. 180 Salem Deeds
Samuel M. Downs - April 1, 1878 - b. 50 p. 543 N. Essex Deeds
Ernest W. Pitman - May 25, 1910 - b. 290 p. 228-229
Myerscough & Buchan - Aug. 31, 1914 - b. 346 p. 544-546 - deed restriction
Raymond Buchan - June 21, 1919 - b. 402 p. 288
Frederick H. Smith - Sept. 19, 1921 - b. 446 p. 344
Anna M. Greeley - Dec. 24, 1949 - b. 730 p. 471
Fred H. & Blanche Mildred Smith - Dec. 24, 1949 - b. 730 p. 472
Bay State Merchants Bank - Feb. 3, 1955 - b. 808 p. 115
Fleet Bank - Nov. 12, 1991 - b. 3356 p. 255
The Savings Bank - Aug. 20, 1996 - b. 4574 p. 273

Inventory Data:

StreetMain St
PlaceAndover Center
Historic DistrictNot Applicable
Historic NameBay State Merchants Bank
Present UseBank
Original UseResidence then Bank
Construction Date1955
Architectural StyleGeorgian Revival
Architect/BuilderW. H. Jones & Son, Melrose, MA
Wall/Trimbrick / wood
Demolition Details1954
Acreageless than one acre
Settingcommercial business district
Map and parcel39-41
Recorded byJames S. Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date enteredMay 2014