This is a serialization of the new book written by Carl Flowers, owner of Silveus Plantation, the subject of "Groton's Anonymous Mistress." This 300-year-old house is accessed by Kemp Street near the boundary of Groton and Dunstable.
By Carl Flowers
Once in a while Old Lowell Road comes into play to help confuse matters. If anyone bothered to look at Virginia May's 1976 history of Groton, they would have seen Dunstable Road cited in the index, four different times. She lists Dunstable Road five times in the index to her book titled Groton Houses, published in 1978. Old Dunstable Road isn't listed in either of May's books.
The 1940 assessors map shows the beginning and end of Dunstable Road, but no one bothered to look at any of the assessors maps. Then, there's all the deed abstracts in the assessors office citing Dunstable Road. All the easy documentation to look at was right there in town hall. The United States Census mentions the Dunstable Road, but not an Old Dunstable Road and then there's the Massachusetts Land Court. More than one case identifies Dunstable Road. The earliest citing was made in 1907 and the latest citing has a 1978 date which involved a subdivision. If any one bothered to look at the assessors maps they would have seen the location of the subdivision and the appropriate Land Court numbers.
The administrative officer further (wrote to me that) no portion of Dan Parker Road extended from Martin's Pond Road to the Dunstable Road. Once again you have to ask, why should Dan Parker Road be shown on a map if it had been abandoned? Did the administrative officer and the Groton Board of Selectmen believe every road that ever existed in town was supposed to be shown on all the town maps? Raddin Road is a good example of a road not being shown on every map. All you have to do is look at the 1923 Groton Precinct Map approved by a special town meeting on June 21, 1922. Raddin Road is without question a town road.
Besides this, we already know the name Dan Parker Road never appeared on any public or private document previous to its abandonment in 1932. Since there was no Dunstable Road and Dan Parker Road didn't exist south of Martin's Pond Road, the description given in the proceedings of the 1932 town meeting had to be a scrivener's error according to town counsel. Dunstable Road should have been recorded as the Dunstable Town Line.
This presumption is as ridiculous as all the other opinions of the town administrative officer. Dunstable Road doesn't remotely sound like the Dunstable Town Line. The Public Spirit reported on February 6, 1932, "the Daniel Parker road from Martin's Pond road to Dunstable road" was abandoned. The results of the town meeting vote were recorded by two different individuals. If the administrative officer bothered to look at the newspaper coverage of the town meeting, the fairy tale dream of a scrivener's error would never have evolved. Let's also not lose sight of the fact that in 1932 the assessors were required to make house to house visitations for making resident and street lists. Year after year, the assessors had the Mistress on Shattuck Road and not Dan Parker Road.
Prior to 2002, not a single map of Groton fails to show a road passing by the Mistress. Those maps include Middlesex County Maps and the 1963 Groton Master Plan Maps. The earliest maps show unnamed roads passing by the Mistress, but when names started being used, the Mistress was on Shattuck Road or Dan Parker Road. After looking at the 1986 and 1998 Groton Zoning Maps you could make a strong argument about the Mistress being on Raddin Road. On one occasion the Mistress was on Martin's Pond Road. Names were used interchangeably depending on who was supplying the information.
Now after nearly 80 years the town has decided to change the abandonment of Dan Parker Road from the Dunstable Road to the Dunstable Town Line. Today, no road is shown to be passing by the Mistress. This vicious, vindictive and contradictory action began in 2002 with Groton's Precinct Map. The punitive detour came about because I challenged everything the town had been telling me about Dan Parker Road going back to the fictitious 1983 opinion from town counsel.
Rocky Hill Road can be seen on the 2002 Precinct map and no one lives on it. Star House Lane didn't become a town road until 2008, but it's shown on the precinct map. If Star House Lane could be shown as a private way on the 2002 precinct map, why couldn't Dan Parker Road? Without a doubt the Mistress was singled out as an example of selective discrimination if one chooses to challenge the town's sovereign immunity. The town may claim the Massachusetts Secretary of State inadvertently left Dan Parker Road off the precinct map, but this is absolutely false. In 2005, the town approved a street index map. That index map shows Rocky Hill Road and Star House Lane, but not Dan Parker Road.
In August of 1999 I informed the town of my intention to place a barricade across Dan Parker Road.