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The Ipswich Post Office mural

During the New Deal era, artists were commissioned to paint murals in public areas throughout the country. The large mural that covers the entire wall over the Ipswich postmaster’s office door is entitled “Ipswich Tax Resistance-1687″ and was painted in 1941 by Saul Levine. The painting depicts the men of Ipswich in 1687, gathered in opposition to a new tax imposed by the English crown. This act of resistance has been called ‘the foundation of American Democracy,’ and was the beginning of a series of events which eighty-eight years later culminated in the Revolutionary War. The act of opposition is commemorated in the seal of the town of Ipswich, which bears the motto, “The Birthplace of American Independence 1687“. Continue reading

John Winthrop and the first Puritans sailed from England to Salem on the Arabella (aka Arbella)

John Winthrop’s journal of the ship Arbella’s voyage to America, March 29 – July 8, 1630

On April 7, 1630, the  Arabella was a week out from its port in England, and the last well-wishers returned to shore. The winds were finally favorable, and the ship weighed anchor and sailed for New England, with Governor John Winthrop and approximately 300 English Puritans on board, leaving their homes in England to settle in a fledgling colony. Continue reading

The Hayes Hotel the morning after the fire which killed three men, August 24, 1969

The Hayes Hotel fire, August 24, 1969

Three men died from smoke inhalation when a blaze swept through the former Hayes Hotel on Depot Square in the early morning hours of August 24, 1969. The fire started in a wing on the left of the building and spread throughout the old brick building. Fire roomers and two firefighters were hospitalized. Most of the 27 roomers were elderly people of limited income, renting rooms at $15.00 /week. They lost all of their belongings.  Fighting the fire that morning were 125 firemen from Ipswich and eight other communities.  Continue reading