Posts Tagged ‘programs’

Events for all ages!

Friday, April 8th, 2011

Spring is here and the Andover Historical Society has a full calendar of events for everyone.   Register in advance and save your place.

April 19th and 20th

Two Day Workshop–Preservation and First Period Architecture

9:30 a.m. -3:30 p.m.

Interested in art, architecture, design, and history?  Take part in an informative two-day program during April spring break.  Learn about the many styles of architecture in New England and take a walking tour of downtown Andover.  Join preservation students, Joshua Miner and Isabella Ciolfi from the North Bennett Street School in Boston to learn about preservation carpentry and build a first period model house.  Become an expert on architectural styles, participate in hands-on architecture activities, and learn about tools of the trade. Program for grades 6, 7, 8 ages (11-15) includes snacks, students must bring their own lunches. Fees are $60 members, $75 non-members.  All materials provided.  Don’t miss out on this opportunity.

April 26th

Afternoon Adventure: School Girl Sampler

3:45 p.m.-4:45 p.m.

School Girl Sampler

Make your own stitches in time!  Explore traditional Andover samplers and textile treastures from our collection.  Learn to sew a sampler like young girls did in the past.  Space is limited.   For girls ages 7-10,  $8 per child. Reservations required.

April 28th

Treasures in the Attic: Historic Clocks with Bob Frishman

6:30-7:30 p.m.

Join clock expert Bob Frishman as he explores the Andover Historical Society’s clock collection.

Bob Frishman, owner of Bell-Time Clocks, has studied, repaired and sold clocks since 1980.   He has professionally restored more than 7,000 timekeepers, including the 1400 vintage clocks he has retailed in the past 30 years.  A past-president of the New England chapter of the National Association of Watch & Clock Collectors, he has written several clock-related articles for that organization’s magazine and continues to lecture on many aspects of clock history and culture.  He grew up in Andover, attended the town’s public schools, and continues to operate his home-based clock business in Shawsheen Village.

Bob has a special interest in Andover-related clocks and was involved in the Historical Society’s obtaining the two old Andover-made longcase clocks on display in the Blanchard House.

Explore the Historical Society collection as he presents the fascinating history of the clocks found throughout the Amos Blanchard House.  Free for members, $5 for non-members.  Call 978-475-2236 to register.

May 1st

Sunday Strolls: Shawsheen Village with Don Robb


Join historian Don Robb for a walking tour of Shawsheen Village.  Learn about the life of famous Andover resident William Wood and the history of Shawsheen Village.  Have you ever wondered why Shawsheen Village has “White Shawsheen” and “Brick Shawsheen”?  Every house has a history, come learn about Andover’s rich past.  The tour will meet in the parking lot of the Brickstone building.  Meet in the parking lot of the Brickstone Buildings.

Check out our online calendar to sign-up or to learn about more upcoming events at the Andover Historical Society.


Attention: All Abby Locke fans!

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

Don’t miss your chance to see Abby Locke’s diary come alive!  The Memorial Hall Library and the Andover Historical Society present a special performance by Andover High School’s Maggie Casto (as Abby Locke), and narrated by Jane Dietzel-Cairns. 

Abby Locke’s Splendid Days:

A Teenager’s Diary in 1860s Andover

Tuesday, April 5, 7:00 pm

Memorial Hall Library, 2 North Main Street

2011 marks the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War, but also the 150th anniversary of the arrival in Andover of the Locke family – including their lively 10 year old Abby. This theatrical presentation of Abby Locke’s diary entries (begun when she was 14 years old) will give the audience a fresh perspective on the daily life of a teenage girl during the Civil War era.   Andover in the mid 1800s was a strict and conservative town — “no cards, no dancing, or any other sport” said Abby — , but times were changing and the Lockes were among those in town who were more tolerant and cosmopolitan in their attitudes. In addition to her weekly routine of school, church and household chores, Abby’s diary describes the social activities, the clothes and, of course, the boys that fill her “splendid days.”

This program is funded in part by a grant from the Andover Cultural Council, a local agency that is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.



Girls just love to Dance!

Friday, March 18th, 2011

On March 10th the Andover Historical Society offered Little House on the Praire in Andover? for local youth.  This program is based on the ancestry of Laura Ingalls Wilder whose family came from England to settle in Andover!

During Little House on the Prairie in Andover? Girls between the ages of 5-10 learned what it was like for pioneers to pack trunks and journey on a covered wagon, make punched tin lanterns and old-fashioned toys, and how to do the Virginia Reel.    The Virginia Reel is a “contradance” or a “country dance” during which calls are made out to partners who follow the steps and interact with the whole group.

The Andover Historical Society offers a wide variety of programs for all youth based on local history.  View our calendar of events to see whats coming up or contact Museum Educator,  Debbie DeSmet, at 978-475-2236 to schedule a program for your group.   Visit our website at to view programs offered for Girl Scouts and Cub Scouts.

Coming up:

March 24th at 3:30-5:30 Addy’s American Girl Tea

Join us as we learn about what it was like for Addy and others to live during the era of the Civil War.  Learn about abolitionists who lived in Andover, make crafts, and play games from the  era.  Finally sit down for a delightful tea and taste Addy’s favorite treats.

April 14th at 3:30-5:30 Disability Awareness: Helen Keller’s Visit to Andover

Take a walk in Helen Keller’s shoes while enjoying this interactive hands-on program that will engage the senses and delight the tastebuds.

April 19th and 20th at 9:30-3:30 Two Day Workshop: Preservation and First Period Architecture

Join museum staff and preservation carpentry  students, Joshua Miner and Isabella Ciolfi of the North Bennet Street School in Boston for a Spring Break program.  Learn about the history of architecture and about preservation methods.  During this two day workshops students will learn about local architecture, historic tools, and build model First Period House.  For ages 11-15.  See calendar of event for details.

Call for details 978-475-2236 or visit our website


A Walk in Helen Keller’s Shoes

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Did you know Helen Keller visited Andover?  Over the course of her life, Helen traveled the world, learning about the people and places around her without the abilities to see or hear.

Many may not know that Helen Keller is an important part of local Andover history.  In May of 1891, Helen Keller came to visit the Abbot Academy on School Street.  Helen  visited at the age of 13 with her teacher, Anne Sullivan, for the first of several overnight visits.  During a tour of the Academy Helen laid her hands upon casts of Nero, Jupiter, and Niobe.  She named the individual sculptures by only using her sense of touch and knowledge of history.

The Andover Historical Society’s newest program, based on the life of Helen Keller, includes stories and activities that teach children about living with physical disabilities in the past and present.  To prepare for this program, AHS volunteer, Holly Heinzer, has looked into the Society’s collection and has found a fascinating history of individuals from Andover who lived with disabilities, most intriguing maybe the story of the Richard and Abigail Carter.  Of their eleven children five were blind: two daughters and three sons.  Four of whom were among the first pupils at the Perkins School for the blind.

Check out our events calendar to see all of our upcoming programs and to sign your child up for Helen Keller’s Visit to Andover.   Our next group event is coming up in April, but if you would like schedule any of our programs call 978-475-2236 or email


Little House in Andover

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

Laura Ingalls (right) with her sisters Carrie (at left) and Mary (seated) c. 1880

Did you know that Laura Ingalls Wilder’s ancestors lived in Andover?  She wrote the Little House series of historical fiction based on her experiences growing up on the American frontier in the 1860’s and 70’s, but two hundred years – and ten generations – earlier, the name of Ingalls was closely entwined with the early history of Andover .  It’s easy to imagine that the earlier generations of the family possessed the same restless and pioneering spirit that Laura portrays in her books.  Their movement, always westward to lands of promise and hope, started here when the Massachusetts colony was England’s frontier.

Edmund Ingalls was born in Skirbeck, Lancashire, England in 1585.  He came to Salem, MA in Gov. John Endicott’s company in 1629 and, with his brother Francis and four others, was among the first settlers of Lynn, MA.  He was a man of good character, but in April 1646 was fined for bringing home sticks in both his arms on the Sabbath day, witnessed by three of his neighbors.  In March 1648 while travelling to Boston on horseback he was drowned in the Saugus River upon the collapse of a bridge he was traversing.

Edmund and his wife Ann Trip had many children.  Their oldest daughter Elizabeth married Rev. Francis Dane of Andover.  The Danes’ daughter was charged with witchcraft, but not convicted largely due to Rev. Dane’s efforts.  Their second daughter Faith Ingalls Allen was the mother of Martha Currier who was charged with witchcraft, sentenced and hanged. 

Their son Henry Ingalls (born in Skirbeck, England) sold land in Ipswich in 1652 and was one of the first settlers in Andover, buying land from the Indians and paying in clothing and trinkets. He was married first to Mary Osgood (on 6 Jul 1653 by Simon Bradstreet) and second to Sarah Farnham Abbot.  They had 11 children, among them Samuel Ingalls, born in Andover Oct. 3, 1654.  This was the first generation of the Ingalls family to be born in America.  Samuel married Sarah Hendrek on 4 Jun 1682 in Andover.  Among their children was son Samuel Ingalls (b. May 1683 in Andover died c. 1760) who married Mary Watts (1710- 27 Jun 1687)  The next generations moved to Haverhill, MA, Sandown NH,  and beyond.

The names of Ingalls sons are listed in military records of every war for the next hundred years.   Captain Henry Ingalls of Andover led an Andover company in the French and Indian War.  Nine Ingalls men from Andover fought at Lexington in April 1775, and 21 in total fought in the Revolutionary War.  This was a strong and adventurous family, always on the move, well before they built their “Little House” in Pepin, Wisconsin. 

The  Andover Historical Society has planned a “Little House on the Prairie in Andover” children’s program, centering on 19th century pioneer life.  The April 14 session for Girl Scouts has sold out, but a second program – also for troops or individual girls – has been added for Wednesday, May 5  from 3:30- 5:30 p.m.   The cost for this pre-registered program is $8 per child, which includes a snack and all craft supplies.  Call 978-475-2236 or email to reserve a place in this program or for more information about the corresponding “Farmer Boy” program especially for boys aged 6 – 10 years.


Andover at Work is here!

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

We would like to thank Jim Redmond and Jane Cairns for helping clean and prepare the barn for our upcoming program Andover at Work.  Your help and support is greatly appreciated.

The Spring Andover at Work program will begin soon and we are still looking for volunteers.  Andover at Work is a two hour hands on workshop designed to meet the Massachusetts third grade curriculum standards. This workshop gives students a chance to travel back in time to 1830s Andover where they leave their 21st century life behind and take on the role of one of Andover’s prominent 19th century citizens. Students learn about daily life and the varying occupations held by Andover citizens in the early 19th century.  As students visit the Amos Blanchard house they  stop in the kitchen to help the house keeper prepare and preserve food, gather eggs from the barn and bring them to trade at the general store, stop in and visit the print shop for the latest copy of the towns newspaper, and help the Friendly Fire Fighting Association put out a fire!  This a great experience for students and volunteers.

We will be holding a training session at the Andover Historical Society on April 7th at 10:30 a.m. to review the Andover at Work program.   If you are interested and would like to attend or have any question please contact Debbie DeSmet at or call 978-475-2236.


Andover Stories Celebrates Our Stitching Past

Saturday, January 16th, 2010


Join us on Tuesday January 19th at 10:00 at the Historical Society for the year’s first Andover Stories.


An antique sampler from the Society's collection

Discover Andover’s needleworking past as Office Manager and costume historian, Carrie Midura, explores the world of school girl needlework. Enjoy a sampling of Andover stitchery as examples of 18th and 19th century cross stitch and embroidery from the collection of the Society are displayed and discussed.


Free to the public. 97 Main St Andover, MA 01810. (978) 475-2236



Andover Stories

Friday, November 27th, 2009

Join us on Tuesday December 8th as actress and story-teller Susan Lenoe portrays Harriet Beecher Stowe. One of Andover’s most famous residents, Harriet will share her joy for the Christmas season including family traditions and fascinating facts about her holidays here in Andover.


The presentation is part of a monthly educational series, Andover Stories: Presentations on interesting and obscure Andover history.  Talks by local historians, writers, authors presenting the people, traditions and events that make Andover a unique town.


NEW DATE: December 8th 10:00 am- 11:00 am at 97 Main St.  Free and open to the public.



Some holiday window dressing…

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

cvsphoto3Have you walked or driven past CVS in downtown Andover lately? Were you wondering why the items in the storefront window don’t look like items you could typical purchase inside? Well, thanks to generosity of CVS, the Historical Society has been able to take over the community window display through the holiday season.


We may continue tweaking it just a bit – but we’re pretty pleased with the results! The left hand window highlights the many events and programs that will take place during December, from teddy bear teas to a parade of party fashions at Memorial Hall Library.


cvsphotoYou’ll find an oversized banner with our new an American Christmas Story logo hanging front and center in the middle window panel. Thanks go out to Toni Harris-Hadad for donating her time and creative talents in designing the new logo – doesn’t it look great? Look closely and you’ll find presents, teddy bears, toys, treats, and tea – all nestled in the boughs of the tree. Very, very clever!


In the third and final window you’ll see three decorated Christmas tree – and if you were one of the 1000 visitors to the Historical Society last December, you might recognize some of the ornaments! One of the trees recreates our boy’s toys tree which had been inspired by some antique wooden tops, toy soldiers & blocks from the Historical Society’s collection. cvsphoto2Be sure to take a look at the unique items used on all three trees… you might be able to search your old toy & craft boxes to use similar ideas at home!


This year’s tree exhibit at the Historical Society will feature fourteen all-new trees with new inspirations pieces to match! We’re excited to have decorators from all over the community and look forward to sharing our exhibit and our programs with the public beginning on Tuesday, December 1st.


If this town could talk… the stories it would tell

Friday, October 2nd, 2009

Ever wonder what Andover was like when your parents were young, why its called Elm Square, or why there is a bridge in the middle of the park? Join the Andover_01Historical Society as we launch our newest program, Andover Stories: Presentations on interesting and obscure Andover history.

 This monthly program will feature a diverse group of lecturers and presenters who will share with you fun and interesting facts about your town.

Upcoming topics include: Andover at Work a hands-on look at daily life in the 1820s Andover, presented by Museum Educator Sarah Sycz; Thanksgiving in Andover:  Traditions and Meals that Brought Us Together presented by Gail Ralston; and Harriet Beecher Stowe: Christmas in Andover presented by Susan Lenoe.

    Generally the programs will run the third Tuesday of each month from 10:00 am-11:00 am. Check out the event calendar on our website,, for dates.