Welcome to Ipswich & Essex
Ipswich and Essex are examples of New England towns that are pretty today because they were poor in the past. There was no harbor, and no source of waterpower for factories, so commercial and industrial development went elsewhere in the 18th and 19th centuries. As a result, the 17th-century houses were not torn down to build grander residences, and you can still visit some of these old architectural gems. Today the towns are famous for their ample antique shops and succulent clams. Formerly the home of novelist John Updike, Ipswich is also the setting for some of his novels and short stories such as A&P, which is based on the local market.