A Brief Andover History, submitted by William A. Greene, 2003


            Andover is situated in the foothills of the Allegheny  Mountains amid the green hills of southeastern Allegany County.  

            The first settlement of the Town of Andover was made in 1796 at Elm Valley by Nathanial Dyke and Stephen Cole.  Daniel Cole, son of Stephen Cole was the first white child born in Allegany County in 1797.  The first burial was that of Zeniah Dyke at Elm Valley, who died January 21, 1798. 

            Other pioneer families from this area included the families names of Baker, Caple, Adams, Hann, Howland and Williams. 

            The Town of Andover was formed from Independence in 1824 and a portion of Wellsville was annexed in 1855.  It has an area of 23,785 acres. 

            The name of the town was first suggested by James Adams whose childhood home was in Andover, Vermont.  He and his family moved from Vermont the same year this town was formed.  As the first town meeting was also called in 1824, the name, Andover, apparently was adopted then.  

            A majority of the early settlers came from the New England states.

              The Village of Andover was once known as “Bakerstown” which is not strange when we discover we owe much of our early development to the Baker family.

              The first inhabitants of the village were Alpheus, Thaddus, and Joseph Baker, who settled here in 1807.  Together with their large families and the accumulation of 200 acres of land, the growth of the village commenced.

              Another great contributor to the growth of Andover was the Erie Railroad.  When the “Erie” came through Allegany County in 1851 is was just what this area needed.

              For years the Erie Station was the center of Andover activities with everything coming into the town by rail, and a vast amount of farm produce, cattle, and ice being shipped from here, all handled by the “Erie”.

              Andover has always been a patriotic town.  We have soldiers from the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 buried here, but they moved here after the wars.  Andover sent 265 men into the Civil War, 11 into the Spanish American War, 3 into the Philippine War, 11 into the Mexican Border War, 113 men into World War I, 341 men and women into World War II, 153 men and women into the Korean War.  No number on the Viet Nam War.  We have over 320 veterans buried in our 18 cemeteries.

              The dairy farm was back bone of the early settlers.  The industrial revolution didn’t start in till the first of the 20th century.  The farms lasted for over 150 years until they ceased to exist.  Only 2 or 3 farms are left in Andover.

              When the industrial revolution started Andover was right there with the best.  There were two knife factories, an enamel plant, an stamping plant, a soap manufacturer, a tannery, a silk mill, 3 or 4 cheese factories, were opened .   There were 3 banks, 2 department stores, 4 grocery stores, a cigar maker, 3 hardware stores, 2 opera houses, 3 hotels, a china factory along with a numerous other shops and stores.

              At the end of the 21st century they were all gone.  Today a majority of the people that live in Andover work in the other nearby communities.