The lot at the intersection of Fellows and Candlewood Roads was assigned in the mid-17th Century to John Brown. His descendant Josiah Brown built the house at that location in 1812.
The John Brown Farm
Until the mid-20th Century, the farm at this location was owned by John Brown and his descendants. John Brown Sr. is mentioned in the Ipswich Town Records as early as 1640. He lived next to Robert Lord on High Street when he first came to Ipswich, the son of Edward Brown who was married to Faith Lord, sister of Robert Lord. This was about 1645-60. Records show a John Brown later owned land on Heartbreak Rd. Before 1660, Mr. Brown built a home on Fellows’s Lane at the corner with Candlewood Rd:
“John Brown Senior, the earliest settler in the Candlewood region bearing the family name is first mentioned in the Town Records in 1640. The Deposition of Thomas Burnum and Martha Thorne affirmed that they knew that Old Mr. John Brown live in a House in Ipswich Town near the house of the Rev Mr William Hubbard’s above seventy years ago, ie about 1650. This has been identified already with a location on Heartbreak Road. They affirmed further that before 1660, Mr. Brown built a house at the Farm and lived in said house he built at the farm till after the year of our Lord One Thousand Six Hundred and Sixty four. This is identified as the farm now owned by John Henry Brown on Fellows’s Lane.”
Over the next 280 years, the Brown family extended and continued their ownership of the finest farm land in Ipswich along the east side of Candlewood Rd. Thomas Franklin Waters wrote a history of the Brown family properties in his essay, “Candlewood, an Ancient Neighborhood in Ipswich, Massachusetts,” and in the two-volume book, Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.”
“On the Candlewood road, leading toward Hamilton, large tracts of farm lands were granted to the first settlers…. Thomas Bishop was in possession as early as 1652. In 1684, a farm of 60 acres with house and bam was conveyed to John Brown, and 36 acres with house and barn to Sergeant John Choate. John Brown bequeathed his farm to his sons, James and William in 1721.”
Waters continued the history of the farm:
“The heirs of James Brown held the farm, and his daughter Elizabeth, wife of Capt. Robert Perkins, gained possession, but in December, 1779, their daughter, Elizabeth, became the wife of Joseph Brown, of the same family line, who built a new house on the farm. His son, Gardiner A. Brown, acquired possession, and bequeathed to his son, A. Story Brown (owner at the beginning of the 20th Century). “
For over two hundred and forty years after John Brown bought the farm, it remained by inheritance in the Brown family through successive generations.
Waters wrote that the Brown family extended the great farm on Candlewood beyond Chebacco Rd into Hamilton
“The great tract of land extending from Choate (Chebacco) Road to Red Root or Red Wood Hill, was included in the early part of the eighteenth century in two great pastures, known as Gould’s Pasture and Wilderness Hill Pasture on the slope of the noble hill, which was called by that name from the earliest times.”
Gould’s Pasture was included for the most part in the farm of E. Newton Brown. James Brown owned a large portion of the Wilderness Hill Pasture before 1741 and it continued in the hands of his descendants to A. Story Brown in the early 20th Century.
Sources, and further reading:
- Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony
- Candlewood, an Ancient Neighborhood in Ipswich
- Genealogical Record of the Descendants of John Brown by Thomas Franklin Waters
- Descendants of John Brown of Ipswich by Sidney Perley
- 1832 Ipswich map
- The day Nute Brown crashed through the Choate Bridge