25 County St., Ipswich MA

25 County Street, the J. Caldwell house (c 1860)

The house at 25 County Street in Ipswich was built in approximately 1860. It does not appear on the 1856 map, at which time this section of County St. was part of the Ipswich Jail grounds. The present owner informs us that “We live at 23 County St. at the corner of Green St. Our understanding is that this house was originally built by the Caldwell family, the same family that the Caldwell block downtown is named for and the nursing home across the street was named for.”

The 1872 Ipswich map shows the owner as “J. Caldwell.” The 1884 map lists it as the “Caldwell estate.” In 1910 the owner is N. S. Kimball. Thomas Franklin Waters wrote in the book Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony Volume II, published in 1917:

“The music of the anvil was taken up by Jonathan Prince, whose (blacksmith) shop and dwelling were on the site of the late N. Scott Kimball’s dwelling.” The 1856 Ipswich Annual Report shows payment to N. S. Kimball, services as clerk, $5. The 1925 Town Report show payment to the estate of N. S. Kimball for hay and grain.

Possible identifications for J. Caldwell are:

  • Caldwell, James, d. 1874, married Mary Kimball., d. 1873.
  • Caldwell, Joel d. 1883, married Margaret Kimball, d. 1903.
  • Josiah Caldwell: Josiah Caldwell was regarded as one of the most intellectual and reliable of the Ipswich gentlemen of his day. He served as Representative to General Court ; Selectman, &c. He was First Church S. S. Supt. 1822-25, and 1836. (from John Caldwell and Sarah Dillingham Caldwell his wife)
The J. Caldwell house is just to the right of center in this 19th Century photo that was taken by George Dexter after the Methodist Church was constructed but before the Episcopal Church was built. On the left is the old sawmill, and in the background is Spring Street and Town Hill, devoid of trees. The identity of the large building to the left of the tree and behind the Methodist church is unknown. It appears to be at the location of the former Episcopal parsonage at 29 County Street, which was constructed in 1875.


1 thought on “25 County Street, the J. Caldwell house (c 1860)”

  1. Josiah Caldwell b in 1781 was married to Lucy Lord in 1822 – he is the highly regarded man you speak of here. His house is the one that is in the American History Museum in Washington – there is a comprehensive article on this home and the significant contributions he and his family made to anti-slavery movement pre-Civil War. This can be found on the Smithsonian website. Later, his son-in-law provided for Lucy and gave her a house at 24 High Street, which was subsequently sold to J.W. Gould , my ancestor….

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