The Ropes Mansion (1727)

Built on Essex Street in Salem around 1727, the Ropes Mansion has been open to the public since 1912. It was built by merchant Samuel Barnard of Deerfield and sold by Barnard’s heirs to Judge Nathaniel Ropes II in 1768. He was a loyalist and died of smallpox as his house was being attacked by a mob of Patriots in 1774. His family went into exile, but reclaimed the house after the Revolutionary War. It remained in the Ropes family until 1907, when sisters Mary and Eliza Ropes bequeathed it as the Ropes Memorial. Various alterations have been made to the interior of the house over the years, most dramatically in 1894, when Colonial Revival modifications were made and the structure was moved back from the street. The building‘s current entryway dates to the 1830s and was inspired by Asher Benjamin‘s American Builder’s Companion (1827). The house also has formal gardens dating to 1912. The house has had several fires: Abigail Ropes burned to death after her dress caught fire in 1839; a disgruntled worker is believed to have started a fire which gutted an addition in 1894; and the third floor attic was damaged in a fire in 2009. Today, the Ropes Mansion is owned by the Peabody Essex Museum.

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One Response to The Ropes Mansion (1727)

  1. George Watson says:

    Has the Ropes Mansion reopened yet. I was in the area last summer and the house was still being restored after the fire in 2009. I live in New Mexico, but grew up in Danvers, in another Ropes house on Cherry St. I’m planning a short trip up there this spring and was hoping that the house has been reopened.

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