Samuel Wade House, 78 County Rd. Ipswich

78 County Road, the Samuel Wade house (1831)

In 1831, Samuel Wade purchased a lot and built this house as his home. The bay windows in the front and rear are the only external reminder of the early Victorian features that Wade incorporated into the facade of the structure, as shown in the 19th Century photograph below, The entrance was originally on the front, and the house had a slight ell on the rear south side, which was removed after the late 19th Century.

The Wade family owned several houses on County Rd., and descended from Ipswich settlers Jonathan Wade and Susanna Prence. On the north side of this house is the Asa Wade house, and across from the Old South Cemetery is the Nathaniel Wade house, built in 1727. On Oct. 10, 1829, Samuel Wade Jr. purchased a lot to the south of his at 84 County Rd., and built a somewhat similar house, which he sold to Rev. Moses Welch, pastor of the Linebrook Church, and Rev. Daniel Fitz, Pastor of the South Church.

The 1856 Ipswich village map shows the house occupied by Samuel Wade’s daughters, the “Misses Wade.” It is owned by “Miss Lydia Wade” in 1872 and she continued in possession until her death. By the time of the 1884 village map, the owner is Miss Joanna Kinsman, who continued ownership in the 20th Century, as shown in the 1910 village map.

Fewkes and Darling Greenhouse, County Road Ipswich MA
Photo is from William Barton’s collection of glass plate negatives taken by Edward C. Darling.
Benjamin Fewkes operated a nursery in the narrow lot to the south of the Samuel Wade house
Benjamin Fewkes operated a nursery in the narrow lot to the south of the Samuel Wade house.

The narrow empty lot to the south of this house was owned by the the Darling-Fewkes family. Edward C. Darling operated a floral business in the rear of the lot, which was continued by Benjamin J. Fewkes in the late 19th Century.

In the early-mid Twentieth Century, the Samuel Wade house became the Southside Nursing Home, with 20 rooms & 13 bathrooms. It was restored as a private residence by the Marchand family, who made it their home in the 1960s and 70s.

The Samuel Wades of Ipswich

A list of the Samuel Wades of Ipswich from Essex County Vital Statistics:

  • Samuell, son of Thomas and Elizabeth, born Dec.1685.
  • Samuel, son of Edward and Margaret, born Jan. 31, 1708.
  • Samuel, son of Timothy and Ruth (Woodberry), born Aug. 24, 1752.
  • Samuel Wade, housewright, son of William and Mary, born on Dec. 7, 1771. He was a founding shareholder of the Ipswich Female Academy, which was established in 1827. He died on Jan. 10, 1848, at age 76, and his daughters continue in occupancy of this home.
  • Samuel Wade born in Ipswich April 17, 1806 to John Wade (1770 – 1835) and Mercy Merryfield Wade (1772 – 1843). He married Eunice Caldwell of Ipswich in 1830, and in 1831 they moved to Alton, Illinois. At first he continued the family trade as a carpenter and builder, but became a banker and served two terms as mayor of that city. He built an elegant home in Alton which still stands.

A Carpenter’s Apprentice

Thomas Franklin Waters described an 1803 contract in which Samuel Wade, on January 7, 1803, apprenticed 17 year old Benjamin Kimball III for four years, an agreement which required him to forego the pleasures normally enjoyed by a young man and whose benefit for being indentured would be knowledge of the trade, plus two sets of clothing upon completion of his four-year apprenticeship.

“Witnesseth that Benjamin Kimball Junior of Ipswich in the County of Essex Commonwealth of Massachusetts, shipwright, doth put and bind out his son Benjamin Kimball 3rd, and the said Benjamin Kimball 3rd doth hereby put place and bind out himself as an Apprentice to Samuel Wade of said Ipswich to learn the art, trade or mystery of a housewright. The said Benjamin Kimball ye 3d after the manner of an Apprentice to dwell with and serve the said Samuel Wade house wright from the day of the date hereof until November 13, 1807, the date the said Apprentice (if he should be living) will be twenty one years of age.

The master of an apprentice had the same authority over the young man as his father:

“During all which time or term the said Apprentice will serve his said Master, his secrets keep and his lawful commands everywhere at all times readily obey. He shall not waste the goods of his said master, nor lend them unlawfully to any at cards, dice or any unlawful game. He shall not play, fornication he shall not commit, nor matrimony contract during the said term. Taverns, ale houses or places of gaming he shall not haunt or frequent. From the service of his said master he shall not absent himself but in all things and at all times he shall carry and behave himself to his said master and all others as a good and faithful apprentice ought during the whole time or term aforesaid.”

The master,was required by to provide his apprentice with instruction in the master’s occupational skills, and to see that the apprentice learned to read and write and have the ability to do arithmetic.

“Samuel Wade on his part doth hereby promise covenant and agree to teach and instruct the said apprentice or cause him to be taught or instructed in the art, trade or calling of a housewright by the best way or means he can (if the said Apprentice be capable to learn) and shall well and faithfully find and provide for the said apprentice good and sufficient meat, drink, washing and lodging and other necessaries fit and convenient for such an apprentice during the term aforesaid. And at the expiration thereof shall give unto the said apprentice two suits of wearing apparel one suitable for the Lords Day and the other for a working day .”

The photos below indicate significant changes to the house over a period of 200 years.

The Samuel Wade house is circled in this closeup from the 1984 Birdseye map of Ipswich. To the left of it is the Asa Wade house.
The Samuel Wade house, circa 1990
The Samuel Wade house, circa 1990. The entrance has been moved to the side, and the ell was removed.


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