March 15, 2010
The Crossways and the Larches
Hopedale in March
Now and Then at Bancroft Park
Blueberry pie eating contest, Town Park, 1970
Annual Breakfast with the Easter Bunny, Saturday, March 20, 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., Union Church, 25
Dutcher St., Hopedale.
Historical Hopedale Homes Change Ownership
By Virginia Cyr
Two estates constructed for and occupied formerly by members of the Draper families have changed
ownership. New owners of The Crossways, located on Adin Street and bordering Mendon Street are
George and Leah Winans of Dallas, Texas. Dr. Vincent J. Arone of Adin Street, owner of one former Draper
estate, The Ledges on Adin Street, has become owner of The Larches, a Draper estate located on
Williams Street in Hopedale and bordering on Water Street in Milford.
The Crossways, which was most recently owned and occupied by Dr. and Mrs. Nicholas Mastroianni, Jr. is
a beautiful home built in the Draper tradition. It originally was the estate of Benjamin Helm Bristow Draper
and Queena Sanford Draper. B. H. Bristow Draper was the son of Governor Eben Draper and was
executive head and treasurer of the Draper Corporation until the time of his death in 1944. Mr. Draper
served as president of several mills in addition to the positions he held at Draper Corporation. He was an
ardent Republican, another tradition of the Town of Hopedale, and was active in financing Republican
state and national campaigns. He was also a member of the Board of Trustees of Milford Hospital.
Mr. Draper's widow died in 1949. The couple were the parents of Benjamin Helm Bristow Draper Jr., who
was born in 1908; Eben Draper born in 1910 and Robert Caulfield Draper, born in 1917.
The estate was sold at auction about 1953 and the late Dr. Nicholas Mastroianni was the successful
bidder. The Mastroianni family occupied the house until about two years ago, when the doctor's widow
built a smaller home on the property, fronting on Mendon Steet. She moved from The Crossways at that
time, selling the large home to her son, Nicholas, Jr. and his wife, Charlotte.
The wing which includes a ballroom and a billiard room was added to the original home sometime after
its construction. B.H. Bristow Draper's family occupied the home on Adin Street now owned by the Russell
Smiths (41 Adin Street) prior to occupying The Crossways.
The house, located on Mendon Street, which is now a two family home and which was the location of a
serious fire a couple of years ago was originally located on the land upon which The Crossways is now.
The home, now owned by Frank Zersky was moved down Mendon Street to its present location to make
way for the estate's construction.
The Winans plan to restore the estate to its former elegance. They also plan to restore the beautiful formal
gardens which were a focal point of the original estate.
The Larches, a status symbol of residents in the 50s, has become the property of Dr. Vincent J. Arone,
who plans to use the property for a residential educational facility for special children. The property was the
home originally of George Otis Draper and was destroyed by fire on May 21, 1901. Following the fire, the
property was purchased by Hanna Thwing (Draper) and Edward Osgood. The year was 1914 and the
couple erected a new home on the Water Street hill, spending their summers at The Larches and their
winters in Boston. The building which Dr. Arone purchased is the one constructed following the fire.
The Osgoods lived at the corner of Hopedale and Draper streets prior to purchasing the large parcel of
property upon which they constructed the large, beautiful home. The Osgood's Hopedale and Draper
street property is now the land upon which the Community House is located. Mrs. Osgood was the sister
of General Draper, Governor Draper and George Albert Draper. The couple had a daughter, Hannah
Osgood Townsend, who occupied The Larches after her parents. After that, the property became a private
club, with membership limited to Draper officials and top ranking department heads and their families.
During the early 50s, those who belonged to The Larches and had use of the facilities, including the
spacious swimming pool, were looked upon as upper class residents. The status somewhat
disappeared as Draper Corporation divested itself of its holdings and finally, its business and as The
Larches became used as the residence of Robert Page, who was president for Draper Division, Rockwell
International and the use of the facility was no longer open to outsiders. The Larches at one time also
served as an inn, providing lodging for visiting Rockwell personnel. In recent years, the estate has gone
unoccupied and unused.
Dr. Arone, who operates a residential educational facility for special children from all over the country, at
another former Draper estate on Adin Street, plans to expand his facility at The Larches. Dr. Arone has
operated the Adin Street school for more than 20 years. The Larches property includes a large parcel of
land and when Rockwell announced the availability of its land holdings, several contractors were eyeing
the land for housing developments.
The two mansions changed ownership on two successive days late in June. According to the office of
Larkin Real Estate, The Larches was sold on June 27 and The Crossways was sold on June 28.
Larkin Real Estate was the firm involved in bringing another change to the Town of Hopedale in recent
weeks with the sale of the Town Hall Spa to Dimitrias and Nikol Karaberi. The Karaberis have opened the
town's first and only House of Pizza in the section of Town Hall which has traditionally housed a coffee
shop type operation. Milford Daily News, July 10, 1978.
Now and Then at The Larches
Now and Then at The Ledges
Bristow and Queenie Draper
George Otis Draper
Myrna A. (Duffy) Hazard, March 3, 2010.
Thelma C. (Shea) Lapworth Shaw, 100, March 5, 2010. The Lapworth family.
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