Harris-Sutton House, 8 Water St., Ipswich MA

Thomas Franklin Waters wrote in “Ipswich in the Massachusetts Bay Colony” (1905) that Abner Harris bought the lot and probably built the house in 1743. The administrator of his estate conveyed it to Dr. John Manning in 1787, and Manning sold the house to Captain Ebenezer Sutton in 1816.

This residence has been called the Sutton House ever since, but the house is older than Waters thought. When timber framer Jim Whidden began disassembling the frame, architect Matt Cummings and architectural historian Sue Nelson discovered evidence dating the eastern part of the house dated to 1677. The location had been a shipyard owned by Moses Pengry. Etchings of schooners on the house sheathing confirmed the discovery, since they were a “record of what kinds of ships were being built at the time.” The house is now called the Pengry-Harris-Sutton house.

Remodeled Sutton House, Water St., Ipswich MA

Jim and Patsy Faria embarked on a 2 1/2 year project that required stripping the house to the post and beam framework in order to rebuild.  The original layout was maintained and original features maintained or reused, including floors, halls, doors, staircases, fireplaces, and even the original nails.

The Harris-Sutton house in the late 20th Century
The Harris-Sutton house in the late 20th Century

A new addition to the house replaces a previously added southerly ell that was determined to not be of historic value. The house was sold to new owners in the summer of 2014.

The Sutton House from "Homes of our Fathers by Edwin Whitefield
The Sutton House from
“Homes of our Fathers by Edwin Whitefield