Elizabeth Brown, descendant of the early Candlewood settler John Brown, was the wife of Captain Perkins, and gained possession of this lot. In December, 1779, their daughter, Elizabeth, became the wife of Joseph Brown, of the same family line, who built this house. Their son, Gardiner A. Brown, acquired possession, and bequeathed to his son, A. Story Brown.
John Brown Sr. is mentioned in the Ipswich Town Records as early as 1640, having first lived on Heartbreak Rd. Before 1660, Mr. Brown on Fellows’s Lane at the corner with Candlewood Rd. Over the next 250 years, the Brown family extended their ownership of the finest farm land in Ipswich along the east side of Candlewood Rd. For over two hundred and forty years after John Brown bought the farm, it remained by inheritance in the Brown family through successive generations.
Thomas Franklin Waters wrote a history of the Brown family properties in his essay, “Candlewood, an Ancient Neighborhood in Ipswich, Massachusetts,” and in the two-volume book, Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.”
“On the Candlewood road, leading toward Hamilton, large tracts of farm lands were granted to the first settlers. John Fawn’s 25 acre lot, on the east comer of Essex Road and Candlewood Road, was sold to Robert Kinsman in 1652. He married Mary Boardman and proceeded to build his house and barns on the lot thus acquired.”
Adjoining the Kinsman farm, Thomas Howlett, one of the earliest settlers, acquired by grant and subsequent purchases, a hundred acre farm. Thomas Franklin Waters recorded the transfer of the early Fawn and Perkins lots to Thomas Howlett of the property, presently known now as Pony Express Farm:
“There was Granted to Thomas Howlett thirty acres of upland and ten of meadow at the head of Chebacco Creek, the meadow lying on both sides of the Creekeand the upland on the West side of the meadow.”
“Granted to John Perkins Senior, thirty acres of upland and ten of meadow lying towards the head of Chebacco Creek, having Thomas Hewlett’s Land on the Southwest.”
“Memorandum, that John Perkins the Elder hath sold unto Thomas Howlett a parcel of Land of forty acres more or less meadow and upland lying at Chebacco granted unto the sayde John Perkins in the year 1636, bounded on the Northeast by a parcel of Land formerly granted unto Mr. Faune…and partly also on the same side …by a parcel of Land granted unto the said Thomas Howlett at the Northwest end thereof butting upon a highway leading to Chebacky at the southeast.” (23d day of the second month, 1638″ (Town Records).
Thomas Bishop was in possession of the Howlett farm as early as 1652. In 1684, a farm of 60 acres with house and bam was conveyed to John Brown, and 36 acres with house and barn to Sergeant John Choate. John Brown bequeathed his farm to his sons, James and William in 1721.
Sources, and further reading:
- Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony
- Candlewood, an Ancient Neighborhood in Ipswich
- “Genealogical Record of the Descendants of John Brown” by Thomas Franklin Waters
- Descendants of John Brown of Ipswich by Sidney Perley
- 1832 Ipswich map