Construction of the 1657 Alexander Knight house - by Ipswich Historical Commission chairman John Fiske:  The Alexander Knight House that now stands on the South Green is an exact replica of a seventeenth-century, single-room house – the sort that many of the humbler first settlers would have lived in. Normally, Historic Ipswich does not write about reproduction houses. But what should we do if … Continue reading Construction of the 1657 Alexander Knight house
To secure a competence - The following remarks were made by the Ipswich Historical Commission chairman John Fiske, on accepting the 2014 Community Service Award from the Ipswich Democratic Town Committee on January 31, 2015: As Chair of the Ipswich Historical Commission, I know how pleased and proud we all are that you have decided to honor us with the … Continue reading To secure a competence
Historic houses on High Street in Ipswich MA The APD: A balance between the community and the individual - By Ipswich Historical Commission chairman John Fiske: Don’t we all get a slightly guilty thrill at peeking into someone else’s room? It’s a bit like listening to their secrets. Now here’s a room that is actually meant to be peeked into – you can tell that by how neat and tidy it is. It is … Continue reading The APD: A balance between the community and the individual
The Old Tann Flats - John Fiske is chairman of the Ipswich Historical Commissionand lives in the Glazier-Sweet house on Water Street in Ipswich.  This article first appeared in the September 2013 Antiques Journal.   We have a dear friend who has moved three or four times since we’ve known her. And each time, she and her husband have bought or … Continue reading The Old Tann Flats
The First Church Clock - By Ipswich Historical Commission chairman John Fiske: It’s not often that a major purchase in 1762 turns into a major headache in 2017. But that is what happened with the First Church’s clock in Ipswich. The First Church (uppercase C: the institution) built its first church (lowercase c: the building) in 1634, the year that … Continue reading The First Church Clock
Abraham Knowlton, “Workman of rare skill” - By Ipswich Historical Commission chairman John Fiske: Ipswich is home to two groundbreaking masterworks of early eighteenth century America, a paneled wall and a pulpit. Both were made by Abraham Knowlton (1699- 1751), a woodworker who is less well known than he deserves to be. William Knowlton, born in England in 1615, was the first of the family to settle … Continue reading Abraham Knowlton, “Workman of rare skill”
Properly Seated - February 17, Wednesday Evening Lecture, 7:30pm Properly Seated: Two Centuries of Chairs in the Ipswich Museum From the Whipples to the Heards, from the Pilgrim settlement to industrial America, chairs trace the history of domestic life in Ipswich and New England. Drawing upon examples in the Ipswich Museum’s exhibit, John Fiske traces the domestic history … Continue reading Properly Seated
The Fox Creek Canal - This article is by John Fiske, chairman of the Ipswich Historical Commission. Memorial Day, 2014: 76º, humid, hazy clouds, and the end of a long spell of unseasonably cool weather. Just the day for our first cruise of the season, puttering among the salt marshes in our little boat. One of our favorite routes is go … Continue reading The Fox Creek Canal