10 Hammatt St., the old South Church Vestry (1857)

10 Hammatt Street

The two-family house at 10 Hammatt Street was originally the Vestry for the South Church, and sat on South Main Street near the South Green. The Ipswich Historical Commission database gives the date of construction as 1857. It was moved to its current location at 10 Hammatt St. and converted into a two family dwelling.

The South Congregational Church

The first meeting house of the South Parish was constructed in 1838, and stood at approximately the location of the memorial in the roadway where South Main Street meets County Rd. The congregation built a new meeting house, and the older structure was taken down. Thomas Franklin Waters wrote a history of the South Church and the vestry building in Volume II, Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony:

“As the old meeting-house, built in 1747, had become antiquated and inadequate, land was acquired in the rear, in 1837. The dwellings, which occupied the spot, were removed, and a new house of worship was erected. It was dedicated on January 1, 1838. The old meeting house was then torn down.

In 1853, the basement vestry was abandoned because of dampness, and a new building was erected on a lot west of the Heard mansion and now included in that estate…. Rev. Thomas Franklin Waters, a graduate of Harvard College in the class of 1872, Andover Seminary, 1875, was installed Pastor on January 1, 1879.

In the summer of 1885, the meeting house was remodeled. The galleries were removed, a partition erected, and by a judicious rearrangement, rooms were provided for the Sunday school and the mid-week service. The Vestry building was sold, and its new owner removed it to Hammatt St. and utilized it as a dwelling for two families. “

The Second Congregational Church burned in 1977.

The 1872 Ipswich map shows a vestry to the left of the Heard House.
The 1872 Ipswich map shows a vestry to the left of the Heard House.
The 1884 Ipswich map shows the South Church meeting house,
The 1884 Ipswich map shows the South Church meeting house, with a chapel and an unidentified building between the Church and the Heard house.

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