Richard Rindge house, County St., Ipswich MA

Richard Rindge house, 5 County St., Ipswich

5 County Street, the Rindge-Pinder-Leatherland house (1718)

The history of this house is complicated. The 1832 and 1856 maps show no house at this location. A house first appears in the 1872 Ipswich map, owned by Ignatius Dodge, the same year that the existing house is believed to have been moved from Summer Street to this location. Deeds show that Ignatius Dodge sold it to Nellie W. and Willis S. Auger in 1891.

Early history of the lot

According to Thomas Franklin Waters’ map of settler land grants, the lot at 5 County Street was granted to or purchased by John Warner. Abraham Hammatt wrote about the Warner family: “William Warner with his two sons, John and Daniel, and one daughter who married Thomas Wells, came from England and settled in Ipswich, in the year 1637.” John Warner owned the lot at the corner of County and East Streets, and also obtained and sold two lots on East St. just past Spring Street. Warner then moved to the settlement in Brookfield in 1660 as one of that doomed town’s earliest settlers. Two of his six sons, Samuel and John, remained in Ipswich.

County Street Ipswich MA
County St. left to right: the Caldwell house at 11, the Benjamin Dutch house at 9 , the Thomas Dennis house at 7, the Rindge-Pinder house at 5, and the home that was constructed on the corner of the George Russell lot at 3 County St. It may be a wing that was added to the William Treadwell house that was removed from the corner of East and Spring Streets

Waters wrote that Robert Dutch was in possession of the lots between Summer St. and East Street by 1660. Part of the land was sold to Thomas Dennis, whose 1670 house still stands at 7 County St. The 1714 home of Benjamin Dutch, son of Robert, also still stands, at the corner of County and Summer Streets.

The 1872 village map identifies a building on this lot as “I. Dodge, Shoe Manufacturing” with an empty lot on the corner. At that time Ignatius Dodge owned and lived in the Thomas Dennis house next door at 7 County St.

Daniel Clark bought the old Rindge house on Summer St. and it was moved to this location, which is where his son Phillip operated an undertaker’s and cabinet shop.

Map of settler land grants as determined by Thomas Franklin Waters
Map of settler land grants drawn by Thomas Franklin Waters indicates that the lot at 5 County St. was part of the John Warner grant.

Visual inspection of the 5 County Street house:

  • The height of the basement is less than 4′, and the stone foundation is capped with bricks and mortar.
  • Exposed massive summer beams divide the front room from the rear in the lower and upper floors, terminating with “lambs tongues” indicating First Period construction. All four interior corners of the house have gunstock posts.
  • Framing in the attic is typical purlin and rafter construction. The roof framing on the north side of the house has repairs that may indicate where the location of the original chimney. Lack of the original fireplace and chimney stack helps confirm that the house was moved to this location. The chimney seen in the photo below extends to the basement, with openings in the lower and upper floors for a wood or coal stove pipe.
  • Wide floor boards in the front room also indicate early construction.
5 County St., photo courtesy of J. Barrett Co. The 1872 and 1896 maps and the 1893 Ipswich Birdseye Map don’t show the house that adjoins it on the corner of East St. The 1910 village map shows the present configuration of houses.
Inside the front room at 5 County St., Photo courtesy of J. Barrett Realty.
Summer beam showing "lamb's tongue"
Summer beam showing “lamb’s tongue” at 5 County St.
gunstock corner post
The upstairs of the house features gunstock posts in the corner framing

Original location on Summer Street

Margaret E. Welden wrote the MACRIS record in 1978 that this house is thought to have originally been located at the homestead of Samuel Dutch on Annables Lane (Summer Street). Richard Rindge, cordwainer, purchased that lot. 38 1/2 rods, bounded northwesterly by Nathaniel Hovey and southeasterly by land of Samuel Dutch, for 24 pounds, 16 shillings in 1718 (Salem Deeds (49:259). Dutch had sold the lot to Hovey earlier in the year and sold the other lot to Jonathan Pulcipher, who built the house still standing at 15 Summer St. in the same year.

This establishes the original location of the Rindge house at 13 Summer Street. It is unknown if this was the home of Samuel Dutch, or if Richard Rindge constructed it after he purchased the Summer Street lot. The antiquity of the framing suggests the possibility that this is an earlier dwelling. Read more about First Period construction.

It is assumed that Richard Rindge built the present structure. A search of the Salem Deeds site finds the following.

  • Richard Rindge et al. made an agreement with Nathaniel Hovey, his neighbor, November 1722 regarding sharing the cost of digging a well and the use thereof. (39: 203)
  • Richard Rindge Jr. sold to John Pinder Jr. “a certain menage or tenament” on Annable’s Lane (Summer St.) on February 5, 1760. The abutting neighbors are listed in the deed as Jonathan Pulcipher, Captain Nathaniel Treadwell, and Nathaniel Hovey, with liberty of the well forever. (163; 23) .
  • John Pinder’s widow, Sarah sold”a certain piece of land” on Annable’s Lane to Wm. Leatherland, Jan. 3, 1799 (Salem Deeds 163:256), and it remained in the Leatherland family until 1872, when Daniel Clark bought the property, bounded northerly by existing land of Daniel Clark, at an auction from the estate of Jacob Leatherland, insane, for $1000 (855:157).

The Rindge house is moved to County Street

Thomas Franklin Waters wrote in the book Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony published in 1915 that Clark’s son Phillip operated a cabinetry and undertakers business in the 5 County St. house at the time of publication, but it is not clear that he maintained ownership of the house.

The house is circled in this closeup from the 1884 Ipswich Village Map. The house at 3 County Street (corner of County and East) was built in the middle of the 19th Century by George Russell, whose extended family lived in or owned the buildings at 3, 5, and 7 County Streets.
The house at 5 County St. in the 1980’s

Discrepancies and Research Notes

Discrepancies between the maps, the history recorded by Thomas Franklin Waters and the MACRIS site have not been resolved.

Waters wrote the following about the location of the house on Summer Street at The book was published in 1905. The problem is that the house he refers to no longer exists at that location he describes. The house standing at that spot now on Summer Street was built in 1872 by Daniel Clark, and served as a funeral home under the ownership of Phillip Clark. That house still stands:

“The next of the original Dutch lots was sold by Richard Ringe, heir of Richard, who had bought in 1718, with a house, to John Pinder Jr., Feb. 5, 1760 (163: 23). His widow, Sarah, sold to Wm. Leatherland, Jan. 3, 1799(163: 256). By order of Probate Court, Chas. A. Sayward as guardian of Jacob Leatherland, insane, sold the property, and it was purchased by Daniel Clark, Feb. 21, 1872 (855: 157). It is now owned by his son, Philip E. Clark, whose cabinet shop and undertaker’s establishment occupies the site of the old house.

Waters wrote that the age of this house on County St is unknown. It seems unlikely that an old house would have been replaced by another old house.

“Robert Dutch was in possession earlier than 1660, as he mortgaged his house and land in that year to Thomas Bishop (Ips. Deeds 2: 45). He sold a lot to Shoreborne Wilson, a cooper, who built a house and cooper’s shop on it, and sold to William Searle May 19, 1663, his lot being bounded by Dutch’s on three sides (Ips. Deeds 3: 133). Searl sold to Thomas Dennis, Sept. 26, 1663 (8: 69) and Robert Dutch sold Thomas Dennis part of his house lot, Nov. 16, 1671 (Ips. Deeds 3:201). John Dennis sold to Charles Smith, a house and thirty rods, Feb. 28, 1791 (156: 91) ; Smith to Jeremiah Goodhue two and a half acres, Feb. 19, 1798 (165: 140) : Goodhue to Jacob Treadwell, May 11, 1807 (180: 188). Eliza Treadwell, daughter of Jacob, married Ignatius Dodge, and her heirs still own and occupy. The age of the present dwelling is not known.”

The information stating that house was moved comes from research by Margaret Welden in the 1978 for the Massachusetts historic house inventory, MACRIS, where we occasionally errors or unsubstantiated history. The information may have been provided by Victoria Sandler, who was the owner at that time. Welden gives page 440 of Waters’s book as her source, which is about the house on Summer Street as I mentioned.

The layout of the book may have confused Welden. The Title of of Page 440 is “Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony” and the top of the adjoining page 441 is “County St. West Side.”

“This house is thought to be one built on the south side of Summer St, by Richard Ringe after he bought property there in 1718 (49:259). William Leatherland bought that house in 1799 (163:256), and it remained in the Leatherland family until 1872. Then Daniel Clark bought the property (855:157) and removed the house to its present location on County St. Like the many early 18th century houses remaining on the south side of Summer St., the Leatherland house is a simple artisan’s dwelling.”

The numbers in parenthesis are the deed book and page, which are online at the Salem Deeds site.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s