During the 18th and 19th Century, many of the lots and houses on East St past Spring Street were owned by members of the extended Hovey family.

Joseph Hovey bought a lot in 1843 from the estate of Thomas Boardman, and an adjoining lot in the rear at about the same time from J. H. Boardman. Thomas Franklin Waters wrote that the old Boardman house was torn down about 1850, and Joseph Hovey built a house on the lot, which appears in the 1856 map.

From The Hovey Book, The Descendants of Daniel Hovey:

“Joseph Hovey was born in Ipswich, Mass., Sept. 28, 1789. He was a farmer, and lived in his native town. He married Mary Andrews Feb. 26, 1837, in Ipswich. She was born in Parsonsfield, Me., Dec. 6, 1813. He died in Ipswich June 1, 1872, at the age of eighty-one; and she died there, his widow, April 9, 1890, at the age of seventy-six. Among their children were Mary Elizabeth, born Aug. 31, 1843; married, first, George W. Otis June 22, 1861, in Ipswich. He died Nov. 19. 1863; and she married, second, John Roberts May 13, 1868.”

Screenshot from the 1872 Ipswich map showing the Joseph Hovey and John Roberts homes.

The Hoveys on East Street

  • Daniel Potter sold the house and lot at the corner of East and Spring Streets to Thomas Hovey 3d, fisherman, March 31, 1741 (81: 176). At Hovey ‘s death, half the house and land was set off to his widow Rebecca, and the other half was sold by John Hovey to Ebenezer Hovey, April 29, 1777 (135: 122). Michael Hodge sold to Ebenezer Hovey Jr., July 14, 1796. John Hohnes Hovey quitclaimed to Stephen Hovey his interest in the house of his father.
  • The next original lot was owned by William Symonds, planter. He sold to Thomas Harris, fisherman, “my house, wherein I now dwell” with two acres. By the will of Thomas Harris, his estate was divided between his sons, John, Ebenezer and William, extending from the Stephen Hovey lot to the lot of John Roberts, Dec. 22, 1742 (82: 252).

Joseph Hovey

Thomas Franklin Waters recorded the history of the Joseph Hovey lot:

  • William, the son of Thomas Harris, sold Richard Pulcifer, a lot forty feet square, at the southeast corner of his homestead, abutting east on Col. Wainwright, April 19, 1704 (18: 72). The Richard Pulcifer lot, forty feet square, with a house, passed through various hands. Francis Hovey sold it to William Stone, Sept., 1790 (171 : 85). His widow sold to Benjamin Averill, Nov. 8, 1823 (239: 223). The house was a small building and stood in front of the present Joseph Hovey dwelling that occupies this lot. It was torn down about 1850. A lot in the rear of this was sold by Richard Harris to David Harris, forty feet wide, one hundred feet deep, with a right of foot-way thither, Dec. 28, 1801 (174: 66). Harris built a house which was occupied later by Thomas C. Boardman. This lot was sold by the administrator of Boardman to Joseph Hovey in 1843, whose heirs still own, together with the Richard Pulcifer lot.

Mary Elizabeth Hovey Roberts (1843-1928)

Mary Elizabeth Hovey, the daughter of Joseph Hovey, married John Roberts.

  • Dr. John Manning sold Nathaniel Kinsman a certain piece of pasture land, two acres one-quarter three rods. John Kinsman sold the lot to Joseph Hovey, “commonly called the Wainwright lot” (Probate records, 1820). Mrs. Roberts, daughter of Joseph Hovey inherited this ancient house lot and a dwelling was built again upon it. This is the neighboring John Roberts house, 44 East Street.
  • The 1910 Ipswich map shows the houses at 42 and 44 East Streets owned by “Miss R. Hovey” (Mrs. John Roberts Hovey. In 1918 Mary E. Roberts, the widow of John Roberts, transferred properties on East Street, and in the following year transferred this house to Jessie L. Morton and Joseph T. Morton.
Screenshot from Salem Deeds. Mary Roberts, widow and administrator of John Roberts’ estate sold several properties after his death.

The present owners prepared the following deed history:

Owner history of 42 East St.

Sources: