39 Summer St., Ipswich MA

The Foster-Grant house, 39 Summer St. (1717)

The Foster family constructed three first period houses in this neighborhood, including the James Foster house across the street, and the ancestral Reginald Foster house around the corner on Water Street. James Foster, son of Reginald Foster, purchased this lot in 1717 and is presumed to be its builder. Although constructed at the end of the First Period, the house has early Georgian interior architectual elements and shows no indication of having had a central chimney. The ceilings are low throughout the house; beams and joists previously covered with plaster were exposed during a 20th Century restoration. More recent renovations connected two small ells in the rear of the house and added a “Beverly jog” for additional access to the second floor.

Although it is now a private residence, this home appears to have been constructed as a two family house, with the first landing of the front stairway forking to the two sides of the dwelling. Various members of the Foster family continued to reside in the house until 1826, when the widow Rebecca Sutton and singlewoman Abigail Foster sold the right side to Ephraim Grant, and the left side was owned by Joseph Wait.

Read more about the Foster-Grant house at the Historic Ipswich site.

Fireplace mantel & wall in the Foster-Grant house


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