Posts Tagged ‘Farmers’ Market’

Legacy: Osgood Farm

Wednesday, August 29th, 2012

Osgood Farm holds a significant place in Andover’s farming history. The oldest part of the Osgood House was built in 1699 for Stephen Osgood and Hannah Blanchard, but it was not until 1739 that their son Isaac expanded it. In later years, Isaac’s son Jacob, who fought in the battles of Lexington and Bunker Hill during the Revolutionary War, became a reputable farmer in Andover.

Osgood Farm House

After inheriting the land from his father, Jacob became quite the agricultural entrepreneur and philanthropist. He frequently went into to town and gave milk away to the poor. However, Joseph’s specialty was in apples, specifically cider.

He built a cider mill, which he used to make cider from freshly picked apples. The cider was stored in barrels in Joseph’s cellar, ready to be sampled by visitors. Jacob, very social and open, often invited people to visit the farm and help themselves to his product.

One of the more well-known visitors of Osgood Farm was famed Revolutionary War veteran James Otis, a close friend of Jacob’s brother David. Otis lived at Osgood Farm during the last days of his life, when he was killed after being struck by lightning. The account of his death is a popular topic in Andover history, as the Osgood house eventually became known as “The House Where James Otis was Killed.” Ironically enough, Jacob Osgood always maintained that if Otis had not wanted a drink of cider, he would not have been struck by lightning while exiting the house to go to the cider mill.


Straight from the Market: Chicken, Beef, Eggs, and More!

Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

It’s time to break out the grill!  If you haven’t already, come to the Andover Farmers’ Market and stop by the John Crow Farm stand for all of your barbecue needs.  At John Crow Farm animals are “pasture-raised.” They let their animals live in an environment where they can eat plants that are nutrient rich and easy to digest. This practice allows farmers to produce tastier and more nutritious meat and eggs than factory farms. John Crow Farm takes pride in the fact that its animals are 100% grass-fed and hormone-free.

What can you purchase from John Crow Farm while visiting the Andover Famers’ Market? Well, just about anything that is meat or poultry. Their meats include pork, goat, beef, lamb, and rabbit, all available in a variety of cuts. For poultry, they offer Cornish rock grass chicken, Cornish game hen, as well as a variety of turkeys.

Looking for something a little more creative? Try one of John Crow Farm’s specialty items! They include turkey bacon, an array of pot pies, poultry sausage, smoked pork, and last but not least, seasoned chicken wings.

Do you have a dog? Treat your canine companion to one of John Crow Farm’s specialty dog treats! The treats are derived from dehydrated, grass-fed meat with no additives and are a great source of protein.

John Crow Farm along with a variety of other local vendors provide specialty products and tasty produce weekly at the Andover Farmers’ Market, every Saturday from 12:30-3:30 p.m.  For more information regarding the Andover Farmers’ Market hosted by the Andover Historical Society call 978-475-2236.  And, as always, happy grilling!


Legacy: Potatoes Come to Andover

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

Many believe the potato was first grown in Europe, but it was actually in South America where this hearty vegetable was discovered.  Originating from Peru and Chile, potatoes were regarded as an important crop by the natives. Now, potatoes are currently the most frequently produced crop in the entire world given the variety of foods that require their use.

The potato was planted in Italy purely for decoration, but was extensively harvested for food in Ireland as early as 1663 and in Scotland around 1740. Scotch Irish Pioneers were responsible for bringing the crop to North America, specifically Londonderry, New Hampshire, which they founded in 1719. However, they spent their first North American winter right here in Andover, one of the first places in America where the potato crop was planted.

One particular account of these Scotch Irish immigrants is provided by author Edward L. Parker in A History of Londonderry. Parker claims that the Scotch Irish planted potatoes before leaving Andover to settle in Londonderry.

Excerpt from A History of Londonderry:

“On taking their departure from one of the families with whom they had resided, they left a few potatoes for seed. The potatoes were accordingly planted; came up and flourished well; blossomed and produced balls, which the family supposed were the fruit to be eaten. They cooked the balls in various ways, but could not make them palatable, and pronounced them unfit for food. The next spring, while plowing their garden the plough passed through where the potatoes had grown, and turned out some of great size, by which means they discovered their mistake.”

Parker claims that these settlers accidentally harvested potato crops left behind by the Scotch Irish. While staying with a local family, some of the Scotch Irish began growing potatoes, but left Andover long before these crops could flourish. The Andover family unknowingly harvested the potatoes the following spring while tending to their own crops. What they were left with was a healthy, bountiful crop, which could be used to compliment a variety of meals.

How about that? Andover’s first encounter with the potato was an accidental discovery of the crop during the spring of 1719!

Get fresh local pototoes at the Andover Farmers’ Market located on the property of the Andover Historical Society every Saturday from 12:30-3:30 June  30-October 6.


Joseph Carlin and a History of the Cookbook

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

Visit the Andover Historical Society on July 19,  at 7 p.m. for a lecture by Culinary Historian, Joseph Carlin, who will discuss the history of the American cookbook.  In 1796  Amelia Simmons’ wrote American Cookery leading to a revolution in cookbook history.   This presentation will look at cookbooks throughout the ages and the growth and development of cookbooks in America.  Culinary Historian and lecturer, Joseph Carlin appears regularly on the History Channel show American Eats, and has also made appearances on Graham Kerr’s TV series The Gathering Place and the Food TV series Bobby Rivers’ Top 5.  His  first book, Cocktails: A Global History was recently published by Reaktion Books.

During The History of the Cookbook , Joseph will  consider the question where would we be without the cookbook? Whether it is published by a renowned chef or compiled by a family member generations before your time, the cookbook continues to preserve recipes that may otherwise be lost. Over time, the cookbook has become not only a resource for recipes, but a source of entertainment. Cookbooks have evolved into various television shows such as The Barefoot Contessa, among others. More than just television shows, there are entire networks dedicated to the culinary arts, most notably the Food Network, the Travel Channel, and FoodTV. But, in a time when technology was about as advanced as the modern butter churn, how did people learn the tricks of the trade?

During The History of the Cookbook, Joseph Carlin will engage you in a journey back to the early days of the United States.  To learn more about Amelia Simmons’ revolutionary cookbook, American Cookery, and to attend the lecture   register online or call 978-475-2236.



Legacy: Rennie Farm

Thursday, July 5th, 2012

The strawberry: it’s elegant, beautiful, and sweet. We wait for the spring and summer when these delightful fruits are in season.  At the Andover Farmers’ Market, the strawberry is the image of our brand and a symbol of Andover history. But, what makes a great batch of strawberries?

George Rennie’s Strawberry Farm was known for producing quality strawberry plants. The four acre farm, once located here in Andover, set the standard for growing strawberries. In their 1955 catalog, the self-proclaimed “Strawberry Specialists” meticulously detailed how they prepared their crops for the best (and most delicious) results.

The Rennie’s suggested that the best time to begin growing strawberries was in June.  Once planted, the blossoms of the new crop should be pinched as soon as they surface in order to strengthen the plant and yield a healthier crop the following season. According to the catalog, shallow cultivation is essential for strawberry plants to hold moisture, allowing the strawberries to have that sweet, delightful taste we know and love. It is then recommended that the plants be covered in meadow with hay, rye straw, or pine needles at the end of November in order to protect them from the winter frost.

At Rennie Farm, one quarter of the land was dedicated to strawberry plants. Winter Rye was planted in the remaining land. Then, buckwheat was planted and plowed in order to maintain moisture. The land was fertilized with hen and stable manure before being plowed in the fall and again in the spring. Two weeks after planting, the strawberry plants are then fertilized and are one step closer to cleansing your palate.

Proper spacing is essential for yielding successful strawberry crops. The Rennie’s believed that the largest crops with the best berries should be grown in rows that are two and a half feet wide. The plants with the least moisture should be planted between these rows.

Each seed was cultivated with care, something George Rennie and his family took great pride in. The growing practices at Rennie Farm were nationally recognized in the Market Growers Journal. The journal published an article profiling George’s son, Wallace Rennie, and his methods for producing quality, highly coveted strawberry crops. Wallace echoed the sentiments of the farm’s 1955 catalog, showing that the George Rennie Strawberry Farm thrives on tradition.

Rennie Farm Strawberry Pickers

A staple of Andover farming history, the George Rennie Strawberry Farm redefined the strawberry. Though the farm is no longer around, its legacy has had a lasting impact on Andover’s farming community. The Rennie’s helped to influence our brand and encourage farmers throughout the area to proudly continue to do what they do best.


Farmers’ Market Season Finale!

Thursday, October 6th, 2011

This Saturday, October 8th is the last day of the 2012 Andover Farmers’ Market season.  Over the course of 16 weeks the Andover Farmers’ Market has taken place surrounding the Andover Historical Society in the heart of downtown Andover from 12:30-3:30 every Satuday.

This Saturday new and returning vendors will celebrate the last day of the season and look forward to another year of offering fresh fruits and vegetables, specialty foods, baked goods, and an array of crafts and body care products.

Don’t miss out on the last day of the Andover Farmers’ Market!

Alpaca from Big Red Acres Farm

Visit the newcourtyard, a newly landscaped portion of the Historical Society lawn with picnic tables designed and put together by Troop 76 and Eagle Scout Sam Pratt.   Jen Boshar of Big Red Acres farm is bringing alpaca yarn and fleece, socks, and scarves and beaded alpaca necklaces.  Jen is also bring Alpacas!!  Visit the courtyard to see these beautiful and unique animals.

Facepainters from the Andover High School will be on the porch offering free face painting to children.  And Merrimack Chiropractic, will be promoting healthy living near the barn.

Visit the Andover Farmers’ Market this Saturday, 12:30-3:30.

Thanks to all the vendors who participated in the Andover Farmers’ Market this Season!

AHS Sustainable Garden Project

Belvedere Body Co.

Big Red Acres Farm

Boston Hill Farm

Caroline’s Clips

Crafty Creations

Cristen Farrell Photography

Farmer Dave’s

Fior D’Italia Pasta and Cheese

Gaouette Farm

Globe Fish Company

Golden Girl Granola

Habitat Soaps

Honey Flour Bakery

Jess Jams

Kittredge Candles

Kristina Trott Photography

Long Hill Orchard

Maria LaTorre Creations

Nantucket Florals

Shady Oaks Organics

Soula’s Homemade Salsa

Still River Winery


Taza Chocolate

Quinn’s Canine Cafe


Come down to the Market!

Thursday, July 7th, 2011

It’s Market Season!  Come visit us at the Andover Historical Society every Saturday through October 8th to visit the Andover Farmers’ Market.

A variety of Fresh Seafood from Globe Seafood Co., Photography by Cristen Farrel

The Andover Farmers’ Market located on the property of the Andover Historical society in beautiful downtown Andover brings together the community to support our local farms and artisans.  Learn from   local health professionals and listen to the soft tunes of area musicians while at the market.   This summer musicians from the Andover Community Music School, Summer Theatre Ensemble, and many others will bring vibrant sounds to the Market.

This weekend local artisans and craft vendors will be located inside the exhibit hall of the Andover Historical Society, Kittredge Candles, Habitat Soaps, Maria LaTorre Creations, Caroline’s Clips, Crafty Creations by Teena Atwood, and photographer Kristina Trott will bring their unique products.  Every 2nd and 4th Saturday the exhibit hall is opened as an artisans and craft vendors sales area.  Enjoy children’s crafts on the porch and check out all the variety of vendors visiting the Andover Farmers’ Market.

Fresh Potted Herbs from Gaouette Farm, Photography by Cristen Farrel

Merrimack Valley Chiropractic will be located in the barn this weekend demonstrating healthy living.

If you would like to participate at the Andover Farmers’ Market or to learn more about volunteering contact us at  visit our website or email us at

To learn more about the photography on this week’s blog posts by Cristen Farrell visit Photography by Cristen Farrell.

Delectable breads and sweets from SwissBakers, Photography by Cristen Farrell


Come to the Farmers’ Market!

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

It’s Andover Day!  Main Street is going to be hustling and bustling with people coming to celebrate at the town festival.  And the Farmers’ Market will be adding to the festivities.

The Black Dog Howl Band will be performing in the barn from 12:30-3:30

Dave Meldrum will be demonstrating beekeeping on the lawn of the Andover Historical Society.

And if you want to learn about the History of Andover try the Andover Historical Society’s History Hunt letterboxing activity from 12-4 as part of the Trails and Sails: TWO WEEKENDS OF WALKS AND WATER.  Stop by the AHS tent or reception desk to pick up a guidebook that will lead you to the many historic site right in downtown Andover.

The Andover Farmers’ Market run until October 9th from 12:30-3:30.  For more information call 978-475-2236 or email


Fried Green Tomatoes!

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

What do you get at the Andover Farmers Market?

Every week I try and buy something different, something I’ve never cooked with, or something I’ve never seen.  This week I saw a great big basket of shiny green tomatoes and I knew I had to make some Fried Green Tomatoes.  There is a wide range of vegetables and fruits available at the Andover Farmers’ Market.  You can find unique Asian vegetables at Flats Mentor Farm, Organically grown produce from Gaouette Farm, Farm Fresh eggs from Boston Hill Farm and Much Much More!!

What have you made with your Andover Farmers’ Market goodies?

Fried Green Tomatoes

Recipe courtesy of


3 medium, firm green tomatoes
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup milk
2 beaten eggs
2/3 cup fine dry bread crumbs or cornmeal
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper


1 Cut unpeeled tomatoes into 1/2 inch slices. Sprinkle slices with salt and pepper. Let tomato slices stand for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, place flour, milk, eggs, and bread crumbs in separate shallow dishes.

2 Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil in a skillet on medium heat. Dip tomato slices in milk, then flour, then eggs, then bread crumbs. In the skillet, fry half of the coated tomato slices at a time, for 4-6 minutes on each side or until brown. As you cook the rest of the tomatoes, add olive oil as needed. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Cut 1/2 in slices

Prep food area and shallow dishes

Dip tomatoes in milk, then flour, then egg, and finally bread crumbs

Fry tomatoes in olive oil

Fried Green Tomatoes

Wah la!  Enjoy your Farmers’ Market dish.

If you want to share your recipes and pictures of your Farmers’ Market dishes become a fan of the Andover Historical Society on Facebook or email


Visit the Market!

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

This week at the Andover Farmers’ Market come meet artist Jerry Smith as he performs using the Mountain Dulcimer.  Jerry has been a member of the Andover Artists Guild for two years and a resident of Andover for 18 years.  Stop by the AAG tent to hear some beautiful music.

While your visiting with your favorite vendors stop by to have your child’s facepainted on the Porch.  Our weekly craft in the barn will be hand tulips, sure to add charm to any room!


If you are interested at volunteering at the Andover Farmers’ Market or would like to attend and demonstrate a unique skill contact Debbie DeSmet at 978-475-2236 or email

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