Andover Historic Preservation

2 CHESTNUT ST2 chestnut st (click to enlarge)


architectural description


Vestibule w/blind arches above side windows; porch on north side added later

This charming and historically significant house retains many original features, in spite of alterations and additions over the years. There are fireplaces in nearly every room, H & L hinges, iron latches, exposed beams and some original panelling (west parlor). The "ship's stairway" is considered a particularly unique and noteworthy architectural feature.

historical narrative

Original owner: Abner Abot
Subsequent uses: Christ Church rectory (1837-1843); Tea room (1906); Rose Cottage Antique Shop (1920s & 1930s)

Abner Abbot had a blacksmith shop next to his house, "under the spreading Chestnut tree" for which the street was finally named.

Squire John Kneeland lived here, 1796-1831. He was step-son and legal representative of Samuel Abbot (47 Central St.), benefactor of Andover Seminary. Kneeland was lawyer, merchant and Revolutionary War veteran and later, member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Street then called Kneeland Lane, in his honor, sometime after he took ownership, 1796. Kneeland's second wife was Priscilla Abbot, daughter of Issac Abbot, who had mended George Washington's glove and got his kiss in appreciation in 1789. In 1825, General Lafayette stopped here for a hot toddy and greeted Andoverites from the Rose Cottage doorstep.

1847: Nancy Kneeland Hall, squire's daughter, sold to Timothy Foster for $1550. 1852: Luther Hubbard and Foster heirs sold to Martha Lawton Marland Punchard, widow of Benjamin Punchard. Owned by various members of Marland family and descendants, 1852-1919. From 1837 to 1843, it was the first rectory of Christ Church, and the first minister, Rev. Samuel Fuller lived here. Mrs. David Gray and Mrs. Jonathan Swift were later occupants.

Martha Marland Punchard was owner after 1852, although she never lived here. Her brother, William Sykes Marland did and scratched his name on the window. From 1848, residence of Mrs. William Sykes Marland (Sarah Northley) who died here, 1900. Abram Marland inherited and Mrs. Marland made alterations for the purpose of opening it as Rose Cottage Tea Room in 1906. In the early 1900s, she added the latticed window on the Central St. side and had the barn removed. At this time, ceiling beams were boxed; hardwood floors were placed over the original wide floor boards, for the extra wear and tear of the cottage's new role as a tea house. She added lattice at the front door and ell door and put on a porch off the first floor back bedroom.

From 1911-1919, the house was rented out and on New Year's Day, 1920, new owners, Mary Ellen and James Anderson, moved in. She had an antique shop here and in the 1930s, added the brick entrance steps.

In 1949, the heirs of Mary Anderson sold Rose Cottage to Louise Coffin, whose mother, Mrs. Fletcher Coffin, restored it to "antique authenticity".


Andover Historical Society files
"Andover Families - Marland - Punchard" by Charlotte Helen Abbot
Andover Townsman: Dec. 23, 1887; Jan. 6, 1888; Sept. 22, 1955; Sept. 11, 1975
Lawrence Eagle Tribune: May 27, 1971; Feb. 28, 1974
Goldsmith, Bessie: Historic Houses in Andover, Mass., 1946
325th Anniversary 1646-1971, Andover Historical Society, 1971
LeBoutillier, Addison: Early Wooden Architecture in Andover, Mass., 1917
Paradise, Scott: Historic Houses and Sites in Andover, Mass. Compiled by Andover Historicl Society, 1934

inventory data

Table: Inventory Data for 2 CHESTNUT ST
Place: Andover Center
Historic District: Central Street NRH District
Address: 2 chestnut st
Historic Name: Abbot, Abner House/ Rose Cottage
Present Use: residence
Original Use: residence w/blacksmith shop
Date of Construction: 1784
Source: AHS files
Style/Form: Georgian
Wall/Trim: clapboards
Outbuildings / Secondary Structures none extant; sheds demolished 1940s; barn removed 1903
Major Alterations: garage added & restored 1949
Acreage: less than one acre; 8,900 sq. ft.; approx. frontage on Central 130' and Chestnut 110'
Setting: corner site; attractive back yard
MHC inventory number:
Recorded by: Stack/Mofford
Organization: Andover Historical Commission
Date: 1975-77

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