59 South Main Street, the Philomen Dean house (Old Lace Factory) (1716)

59 South Main Street, the Philomen Dean house (Old Lace Factory) (1716)

The Philomen Dean house, 59 South Main is on the right after crossing the footbridge. The house dates to 1716, with a gambrel roof, somewhat unusual for the time. Sarah Ordway, relict of Samuel Ordway the blacksmith whose house and shop were the only early buildings at this location, sold the four rod lot and the six rod lot to Doctor Philemon Dean, Sept. 8, 1715 (32: 268). It was bounded “north by a cartway that goeth through the river, west along by ye River, south on ye Common next ye saw mill, east by the County Road, with an old dwelling house upon ye said land.”

Philemon Dean Sr. was a constable of Ipswich, served under Maj. Samuel Appleton in King Philips War, and died in 1716 long after the death of his wife and one of his twin sons. The family name is alternatively spelled Deane or Dane. His tombstone at the Old North Burying Ground reads,

Here Lies Y Body Of Docr Philemon Deane
Who Died October Y 18th, 1760 Aged 70 Years
O Lord by Sad & Awful Stroakes Of Mans Mortality
Let Us All Be Put In Mind That We Are Born To Dye
Grave Saint Behind That Cannot Find
Thy Old Love Night Nor Morn
Pray Look Above For Thers Your Love
Singing With Y First Born

Tombstone of Philemon Dean

The Old Bay Road turned here and crossed the footbridge where the EBSCO dam is now. Between there and the Choate Bridge was still a wetland. Philemon Dean Jr. was one of the petitioners for a new church at the South Green and for the new stone arch Choate Bridge to serve people on that side of the river. The house was sold in 1827 by auction to Theodore Andrews, a lace manufacturer, and became known as the “Lace Factory.” A wing on the north side housed the lace machines. Read more about the lace factory in Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.


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