Joseph's Story

Text size

ANDOVER- Joseph C. Bartley, 87, of Andover, died Monday, March 5th with his wife of 66 years Joan at his side.
In 1960 he founded the world famous restaurant, Mr. Bartley's Burger Cottage, considered a landmark in Harvard Square and a family business depicted in movies, books and television shows. Over the years "Mr. B" built friendships with everyone from sports heroes, politicians, Harvard University scholars and the common man which he considered himself. The epitome of a self-made man, Joe was born in a small house on 2nd street in North Andover and was raised there and in South Lawrence. He briefly attended Central Catholic High School and Lawrence High School (Oliver School) before going to work at the age of sixteen to help support his family.
Family and faith were the foundation of his life. A father of five and devout Catholic, Joseph's life revolved around the family business, attending daily Mass and providing meaningful life lessons to everyone he came in contact with. He was well known for his likeable personality, quick wit and his passion for using his one-liners, quotes and religious sayings to help everyone he spoke to walk away with a smile. His compassion for others led to a life full of personal frugality and incredible generosity to charitable organizations such as Catholic Charities and the Point After Club of Lawrence.
Joe loved watching baseball and boxing and was a long-time Red Sox season ticket holder. He enjoyed spending time with his family and friends at his beach cottage in Seabrook, NH where many fond memories endure. He treasured walks on his breaks from the restaurant through the streets of Cambridge and Boston to connect with friends and loyal customers.
Joseph C. Bartley is survived by his beloved wife Joan M. Bartley and their five children, Kathryn Richard of North Andover; Joseph Jr. of Lawrence; William and his wife Karen of Reading; Robert and his wife Christine of Bedford, N.H., and Christopher and his wife, Nicole of Holden along with 14 grandchildren and nine great grandchildren. He is also survived by his sister Joan Benjamin, her husband, Rodger Benjamin and two nieces. He was predeceased by his father Francis Bartley; mother Catherine McCallion Bartley, brothers and Military Veterans William and John Bartley and one nephew, Gregory Benjamin.
Calling hours are Sunday, March 11th from 2 to 6 p.m. at Conte Funeral Home, 17 Third Street, North Andover, MA; a Funeral Mass will be held Monday March 12th at 11 a.m. in St. Theresa's Catholic Church, 63 Winter Street, North Reading, MA, 01864; burial following the Mass at St. Mary-Immaculate Conception Cemeteries in Lawrence.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Theresa's Church.
To leave on-line condolences, please visit www.contefuneralhomes.com.
Published on March 13, 2018
Send flowers
in memory of Joseph
See more

Obituary published in

Arrangements by


Share this story with a friend.