18 Green Street, the Isaac Stanwood – Joanna Caldwell House (1812)

18 Green Street, the Isaac Stanwood Jr. house (1812)

The Isaac Stanwood Jr. house at 18 Green Street was built in 1812 by Deacon Isaac Stanwood after Sarah Knowlton sold this lot to him in 1812 (197; 25). He was the son of Captain Isaac Stanwood Sr., a Revolutionary War soldier. He married Joanna Caldwell in 1810, at age 26.

18 Green Street, the Isaac Stanwood House (1812)

From “A History of the Stanwood Family in America” we read the stories of the two Isaac Stanwoods.

Captain Isaac Stanwood Sr.

Captain Isaac Stanwood was born in Ipswich, May 2, 1755. On January 24, 1775, he was enrolled among the Ipswich minute-men, and marched as private in Captain Nathaniel Wade’s company, in the alarm of April 19, 1775, to Mystic; was ordered on the 20th to Salem, on the 21st to Ipswich, and thence to Cambridge. He remained in service until May 10, 1775.

Captain Stanwood married, February 26, 1778, Eunice Hodgkins, the daughter of John Hodgkins, of Ipswich. Captain Stanwood was a trader, and apparently had much to do with Portsmouth, New Hampshire, where his brother William was settled. On October 16, 1778, the provincial authorities gave order to the Maritime Office to “Clear out Isaac Stanwood for Ipswich, with 100 bushels of Corn.” He was blind before he died, with cataracts on both eyes, and his granddaughter Joanna remembers leading him about, probably with some grown person’s assistance. He lived in a house (The Andrew Burley house) which is still standing in 1898 on what is now Green Street, Ipswich, but was then Green Lane. Captain Stanwood was buried, with his wife, in the Ipswich burying-ground.

DIED DEC. 15. 1821 AT AGE 66
DIED FEB. 3, 1840 AT AGE 82″

Deacon Isaac Stanwood Jr.

Deacon Isaac Stanwood, Ipswich MA
Deacon Isaac Stanwood

The son of Isaac Stanwood, Deacon Isaac Stanwood, was born in Ipswich, September 21, 1783. On June 12, 1810, he married Joanna Caldwell. The Deacon was a builder and housewright by trade, and he built this house on Green Street, in which he and his wife lived all the rest of their lives. It was two doors off from the old Stanwood home (the Andrew Burley house) and nearer the river. Just over the river, on the Turkey Shore road, was Mrs. Joanna Stanwood’s birthplace, the old Emerson-Howard house, built in 1648. Captain Ebenezer Caldwell, her father, lived in it for thirty-two years, till his death, in 1821.

In his later years Deacon Stanwood was a great sufferer from tic-douloureux. One of his grandsons remembers well that sometimes when it came on during the morning prayer the Deacon would hold out until the pain was unbearable and then leave the room. His prayers were all alike on week-days, with a different one for Sundays. Mr. Stanwood was a most upright man, much respected by his fellow-citizens. In the Ipswich burying-ground, not far up the hill, in a sunny spot, are the graves of Isaac Stanwood and his wife.

In 1829, the widow Eunice Caldwell conveyed to her daughter Eunice Caldwell, a house lot on which to build a home, and which his daughter, Mrs. Eunice Stanwood Cowles owned and lived in. The small house still stands and was the entrance to the Caldwell Nursing home.

Eunice Stanwood Caldwell Cowles

Eunice Caldwell Cowles

*Excerpt From the Cowles Papers, Mount Holyoke College Archives and Special Collections, South Hadley, MA. which contain correspondence, writings, biographical information, Caldwell and Cowles family papers and a photograph. Chiefly focusing on Eunice Stanwood Caldwell Cowles and her connections to Mary Lyon and Zilpah P. Grant Banister through both Mount Holyoke and Ipswich Female Seminaries.

“Eunice Caldwell was born on February 4, 1811, in Ipswich, Massachusetts. She was the daughter of Captain John Caldwell and Eunice Stanwood Caldwell. Her father, a sailor, drowned in the Kennebec River in 1835.

She attended Ipswich Female Seminary from 1828 to 1829, where she met and began a lasting friendship with Mary Lyon, a teacher and an assistant to Zilpah P. Grant, the school’s principal, from 1828 to 1839. She graduated from Ipswich in 1829 and was a teacher there from 1830-1835.

She served as the first principal of Wheaton Female Seminary (later Wheaton College) in Norton, Massachusetts in 1836. She left her position at Wheaton for Mount Holyoke Female Seminary, where she was Associate Principal from 1837-1838. She married the Reverend John Phelps Cowles in 1838 and followed him to Oberlin College, where he was professor of Hebrew.

In 1844 they returned to reopen Ipswich Female Seminary which they ran until it closed in 1876. The Cowles’s had three daughters. Cowles died at the age of ninety-two on September 10, 1903 in Ipswich, Massachusetts.”

Cowles tombstone at the Old North Burying Ground
Cowles tombstone at the Old North Burying Ground

The Ipswich Female Seminary was established in April 1828 by Zilpah Grant and 24-year-old Mary Lyon for the secondary and college-level education of young women. Girls were prepared for careers as teachers and provided with rigorous studies in academic subjects and “standards of personal conduct and discipline.” It was the first endowed Seminary for women and the first to give diplomas to its graduates.

Ipswich Female Seminary
Ipswich Female Seminary
The Ipswich Female Seminary was on the left at the location of the Christian Science Church.


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