Andover Townsman, Andover, MA


July 19, 2012

Dalton column: 'Avenue of Flags' and getting home for dinner

Retired Andover Fire Chief Harold Hayes asked if I remembered the "Avenue of Flags." I remembered that Andover used to fly flags pretty much all over the downtown and Shawsheen for patriotic holidays, but I didn't specifically remember the term "Avenue of Flags."

Hayes said that, between 1965 and 1968, he and Walter Potvin, working as the fire-alarm crew of the fire department, installed all the hardware and flag poles on the telephone poles around downtown, including all the poles from Phillips Academy to the Lawrence line on Main Street plus going up some fair distance on Elm, Lowell, Haverhill, and Balmoral streets. They put the flags up for Memorial Day and Independence Day, then removed them after three days and properly stored them.

The numbered flags were the family burial flags of Andover military people who served in the Civil War, World Wars I and II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

Chief Hayes is retired, now lives in Florida and says he knows the tradition of putting up these flags continued through Town Manager Ken Mahony's days, but the flags became less numerous when another department took the job over from the fire department. "This might have been due the flags getting old or being returned to the owners," said Hayes.

I picked up some additional information on Jim Greeley, the owner of Greeley's Market. The telephone number of Greeley's Market was 1234. This was before dial phones in Andover when we spoke to operators. You'd pick up the phone and an operator would say, "number please"; you'd respond, "1234, please"; and the oper ator would say "thank you." Greeley's number became GReenleaf 5 1234 and now is 978-475-1234. I'm sure it won't be answered at the market, so please don't call it.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

    U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES/Courtesy photo Dr. Howard Koh will step down as U.S. assistant secretary for health after five years to rejoin Harvard School of Public Health this fall in a new position in its Department of Health Policy and Management.

    Koh to rejoin Harvard School of Public Health Posted 11 days ago 1 Photo
  • 48 locals to pedal in Pan-Mass Challenge Posted 11 days ago

    Courtesy photo Hannah Currie is spending 10 days this summer becoming immersed in the music industry at GRAMMY Camp in Los Angeles.

    Currie hits note at LA's GRAMMY Camp Posted 11 days ago 1 Photo
  • South Church names new senior pastor Posted 18 days ago

    COURTESY PHOTO Andover residents Patrick James, left, Adam Geaslen, Ryan Byrd and Dan Bryant claimed first place at the 35th annual Boys & Girls Club of Lawrence Golf Tournament at Indian Ridge Country Club in town.

    Local foursome aces Boys & Girls Club tourney Posted 18 days ago 2 Photos

    COURTESY PHOTO The Marble sisters --Anna, 8, left, and Isabel, 11 -- post-donatin to Locks of Love.

    Sisters pair up to donate pony tails to Locks of Love Posted 18 days ago 4 Photos
  • AT HOST1

    DESI SMITH/Staff photo Former Andover residents Dana Cohen and his wife, Ginny, back, left, have regularly hosted foreign exchange students since 1989. Farrah Moussa, back right, from Egypt, and Paula Valverde, front right, from Spain, are the latest students to spend a year with the Cohens, who now live in Gloucester.

    Former Andover couple welcomes exchange students for quarter-century Posted 18 days ago 4 Photos
  • Thursday, July 3, 2014
  • LENO1

    FILE PHOTO Jay Leno, who honed his comedy skills growing up in Andover, will receive the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor this fall during a performance at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington.

    In good comedy company Posted 25 days ago 2 Photos

    ACT 3.jpg Susan Stott, third from left, accepts the Opening Doors to Affordable Housing in Andover Award from Andover Community Trust directors, from left, Don Schroeder, treasurer; John Pearson, president; and Joan Johnson, clerk.

    Affordable housing advocates honored Posted 25 days ago 2 Photos

    Salim Tabit

    Townspeople in the News Posted 25 days ago 1 Photo

Pictures of the Week