After railroads connected Barton with the outside world between 1859 and 1873, the village emerged as a leading manufacturing center in Orleans County. By 1900 it had more than 1,000 residents who were employed in local sawmills, granite quarries, and the Peerless undergarment factory. Glover-born Henry Cutler, who clerked in Barton and then served as a commercial traveler for Boston clothiers, was the embodiment of local business prosperity. The buildings he commissioned demonstrated the aspirations of the “urban” villages of northern New England, as well as the business and cultural connections among them. Perhaps based on contacts made while traveling on business, Cutler hired Perkins and Bancroft of Haverhill, Massachusetts, to design a house on the hill overlooking the north end of Main Street. The two-and-a-half-story house blends Queen Anne and Colonial Revival, with an engaged two-story tower and rounded porch on one of its front corners and a porte-cochere, pedimented porch entrance, and Palladian window on the other.
As a major shareholder in the Barton National Bank, Cutler was appointed its director in 1896, the same year he organized and was elected president of the Barton Savings Bank. In 1906 the two banks, probably with Cutler's guidance, hired the Boston firm of Kendall, Taylor and Stevens to design the three-story, brick, neoclassical commercial block at Main Street and Harrison Avenue to house the two banks, the post office, the town clerk, offices, and a fraternal hall on the third floor. In the ensuing decades, Cutler occupied a number of public offices, including serving as a state representative. He also donated seventeen acres at the outlet to Crystal Lake for a community park, which the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) transformed into what is now Crystal Lake State Park.