The Robert Wallis house at 130 Topsfield Road dates to the first half of the 18th Century. Original parts of the house may date to 1703, but the chimneys at either end of the building are indicative of a major 1750 renovation.
Ensign Nicholas Wallis was born in 1633 in Ipswich to Robert and Rebecca Wallis, who were among the first settlers in Ipswich. Land was granted to him in 1639.
Sargent Robert Wallis 3, son of Ensign Nicholas Wallis and Sarah Bradstreet, was born March 12, 1661.His mother, Sarah Bradstreet Wallis, was born in 1638 in a section of Ipswich that became Rowley. Her parents were Humphrey and Bridget Bradstreet. In 1697 Sargent Robert Wallis held the position of Surveyor of highways. He served as a selectman in 1719-20. In that year, seats were appointed to him and his wife in the Meeting House. Joining many of the town’s distinguished leaders in the Men’s Third Row was Sargent Robert Wallis. In the Women’s seat across the alley were the leading women, including the wife of Robert Wallis.
Thomas Franklin Waters wrote that in 1667, Nicholas Waters was among a group of men who proposed to build a dam at the location of the Mill Road bridge.
“Sargent Nicholas Wallis,” received permission in March, 1686-7 “to improve the water by damming in the river against his own land, not exceeding three foot, for the building a fulling mill or mills, provided he do it within a year and a half.” Sergeant Wallis did not improve his privilege.”
- Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony Volume II by Thomas Franklin Waters
- Hammatt Papers: Early inhabitants of Ipswich, Mass. 1633-1700 by Abraham Hammatt