92-96A Main Street

Architectural Description: 

The retail block was built in 1927 by business partners Esther & Abraham Kaplan of Brookline, MA and Abraham D. Meltzer of Boston. The one story building of ornamental sandstone and brick is very typical of commercial buildings of the period. The parapets contain floral scroll work and urns denoting each stores entrances and boundaries. Rope banding outlines each storefront adding a simple decorative element. The original wood frame doors and windows have all been replaced with new efficient glass. Under the windows brick matching the side of the building has replaced the former wooden louvered panels of the period. Uniform signage contributes to the overall unity of the block and the building is a comfortable scale for area and the beginning of the east side of the downtown business center. Originally built as four separate store fronts, number 92 was divided into two stores about 1947. It was recently returned to its original size and now accommodates the Robert Jason Salon.

Historical Narrative: 

Several businesses have been located here over the last 87 years. The longest tenant was the Academy Barber Shop which opened jointly with the Madison Beauty Salon at #96 in 1939. The barber shop closed in 2009 when “Mike” the barber retired.

The first businesses to occupy this block include; #96 MacTage Co. restaurant in 1928,
1930, #92 First National Stores, Inc, #94 Butler’s Dye House, #96 Jack’s Shoe Shop and #96 ½ The Stratford Shop – confectionery.
1930s also had; Jean Karr shop, Luis M. Huntress – photographer, The Carriage Trade Shop, Madison Beauty Shop, Academy Barber, and Peabody Book Shop.
1940s; Florence Handy yarn shop, Helen S. Tewksbury – millinery,
1950s; Archie Card & Yarn, Mary Ann’s Card Shop, The Curio Shoppe, Academy Barber, Ruth D. Morrison, women’s apparel.
1960s; Mary Ann’s Card Shop, Sam’s Delicatessen, Academy Barbershop, The Shoe Tree,
1970s; Music Club, The Bird’s Nest, Andover Stationers, Andover Cordial Shop,
The Stuffed Shirt, Berge’s Real Estate
1980s; Geometrics Framing,
1990s; Sparky’s Sporting Goods, Red Harris Sports, SophistiKid, Cheever House Interior
Design, Dunkin Donuts opened April 18, 1993 at #96 ½. moved in 2008, now the Ultimate Perk 2008
2000s; Robert Jason Solon, Sweet Mimi’s Chocolates, Van Ward Gallery, The Ultimate Perk Coffee Shop,

Historical site information:
This site was once part of land of John L. Abbot and his estate sold the lot for $400 to the First Universalist Society in Andover for a meeting house and place of worship on April 4, 1838. The deed describes the land on the Turnpike and the way laid out by John Abbot near Merrill Pettengill’s Shop. [Punchard Ave.] The lot was three rods wide on Main Street and 110 feet deep, running parallel along the way. The deed required that the meeting house be “so placed so the Easterly end shall be no less than 98 feet back of said Turnpike”. Samuel Abbott was the executor of John L. Abbot’s estate. The meeting house was in use until the society disbanded in 1866.
The former meeting house and land was purchased by the Town of Andover from Hiram French and the deed transfer took place on August 9, 1867. A special Town Meeting vote in October 1867 authorized to pay $1435 for its purchase. The building was then fitted up for an additional expense of $1000, into a Grammar school, today’s equivalent of a Middle school or Junior High.

With the construction of a new grammar school (John Dove School) on Bartlet St. in 1878 the old building and land was auctioned off.
April 25, 1879 AA- Auction of Grammar School and land on Saturday 26, at 2 pm. May 2, 1879 AA – The old Grammar School property, corner of Main Street and Punchard Avenue, owned by the town, was sold at auction on Saturday. The building sold for $75, purchaser John H. Flint. The land was sold to the heirs of H. W. Abbot, for $900. May 23, 1879 AA – John H. Flint has sold the old Grammar School house to Albert Bancroft. Mr. Bancroft is to move to his premises for a barn.

The corner lot at 94 Main St. was purchased by the heirs of Henry H. Abbott on April 26, 1879 for $900 and the deed recorded on May 10, 1879. Henry Abbott’s children; Charles H., Frederic M., Catherine F., & Helen A. Ingersoll all then living out of State in Illinois, Ohio, and New York respectively, sold the corner lot to Dr. James F. Richards for $1450 in April 1887.

Dr. Richards built a house and he and his wife Anna H. moved into it on February 23, 1888. The house was designed by Merrill & Cutler of Lowell, and Brainerd Cummings was the contractor. The large Queen Anne style home faced Main Street until 1927 when the house was lifted up, turned 90° and moved to the rear of the lot now #2 Punchard Avenue. The front part of the lot was then developed into the current business block and the lot was finally divided into two separate properties in 1933.

See # 94 Main Street & #2 Punchard Avenue for additional information.
1932 First National Stores; Butler's Dye House; Jack's Shoe Shop
1943 Carriage Trade Shop; Academy Barber Shop,
1953 Archie Card & Yarn Shop; The Curio Shoppe; Carriage Trade Shop
1960 Fire damages Sam's Delicatessen
1992 Sparky's Sports; Geometrics Gallery; Academy Barber Shop; Cheever House

Bibliography/References: 

Andover Preservation Commission - June 2010, Dec. 2010
Northern Essex Registry of Deeds, Lawrence MA
Essex Registry of Deeds, Salem, MA
Andover Historical Society Archives
Andover Resident Street Directories
Andover Evaluation Reports; 1850, 1860, 1870, 1900, 1910, 1920
Andover Town Maps, 1852, 1855, 1872, 1888, 1896 Sanborn Map, 1906.
Andover Advertiser & Andover Townsman newspapers Directories: 1926, 1932, 1943, 1953
Maps: 1852, 1872, 1884, 1896, 1906, 1930

Owners;
John L. Abbot Estate - land
Samuel Abbott, Executor
First Universalist Society in Andover - April 4, 1838 - b. 306 lf. 8 – Salem Deeds
Willard Pike, James H. Cochran, & Henry Burtt - Feb. 26, 1866 - by Legislature
Hiram W. French - May 5, 1866 - b. 710 lf. 69 Salem Deeds
Town of Andover - Aug. 9, 1867 - b. 733 lf. 211 Salem Deeds
Henry H. Abbott heirs - May 10, 1879 - b. 90 p. 562 Lawrence Deeds
James F. Richards - April 14, 1887 - b. 90 p. 562
Anna H. Richards, widow - May 13, 1903 -Estate
Margaret E. Carey & Frances G. Carey April 9, 1921 -b. 438 p. 225
Frances G. Carey - by Will
Esther & Abraham Kaplan & Abraham D. Meltzer -Nov. 24, 1926 - b. 528 p. 366
Aug. 13, 1927 -b. 534 p. 325
Philip E. Meltzer - Aug. 24, 1927 - b. 534 p. 327
Sophie Green - b. 540 p. 493 holds mtg.
Sophie Green - July 9, 1929 - b. 547 p. 169
(Property divided -Plan #920) - Oct. 5, 1933 - b. 572 p. 372-374 partial release
2nd lot with house to Thomas & Monica Connolly – b. 572 -374
2 Punchard Ave - b. 649 p. 370, possession
Attleborough Savings Bank - May 7, 1943 - b. 650 p. 190
James J. London, Trustee of - May 6, 1944 - b. 664 p. 48
Upland Real Estate Trust - Ralph H. Robb - May 9, 1944 - b. 691 p. 188
Jean D. Robb - Feb. 28, 1949 - b. 721 p. 43 & 44
Ralph H. & Myrtle Robb, T. Bernadette Mahoney - Oct. 14, 1950 - b. 758 p. 47 & 48 ½ share
T. Bernadette Mahoney - May 9, 1952 - b. 763 p. 8 & 9 quit claim ½ share
Myrtle K. Robb - July 11, 1958 - probate
J & N Realty Trust - James R. & Nancy F. Hadad - Aug. 12, 1985 -b. 2006 p. 12

Inventory Data:

StreetMain St
PlaceAndover Center
Historic DistrictNot Applicable
Present UseRetail / Commercial
Original UseRetail / Commercial
Construction Date1927
SourceERDS, ENRDL
Architectural StyleOther
Foundationstone and concrete
Wall/Trimwood, brick
Roofasphalt
Major AlterationsStore changes
Conditiongood
Moved?Yes
Move DetailsSchool blding, & House
Acreageless than one acre
Settingretail - commercial
Map and parcel39-43
Recorded byJames S. Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date enteredJuly 1992, 3/2014, 12/26/15

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