Hamlin Reservation

106 Argilla Road, the Octavia Hamlin house (1784)

The Hamlin Reservation at 110 Argilla Rd. in Ipswich is a 135 acre former coastal farmland, with a rocky forested island surrounded by salt marsh, now owned by the Trustees of Reservations. The historic dike connecting the mainland to Eagle Island crosses marshland and was built to give grazing livestock access to the island. Remnants of old stone walls exist and remind of the property’s
agricultural history and early settlement.

The land with this house was bequested to the Trustees of Reservations in 1993 by Octavia Hamlin.  

The date of construction of the large barn and the house at 106 Argilla Rd. is listed with the Ipswich Historical Commission and the Assessors as 1784, built by John Baker III. The buildings were moved from Argilla Farm across the road to the present location about 1916-1917, which a late 19th Century photo of Argilla Rd. seems to confirm. It is unclear whether the house was stucco before or after the move. The late Octavia Hamlin donated the house and land to the Trustees of Reservations in 1993.

A path begins from the small parking lot just off Argilla Road and takes you over a rocky dike through the marsh, continuing around Eagle Island. At the half-way point you can view Labor in Vain Creek weaving through the salt marsh grass.

Hamlin Reservation
Photo by Gordon Harris
Hamlin Reservation
Photo by Scott Sazlin
Hamlin Reservation
Photo by Dave Dunham

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