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Joseph Ditson House

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43 South Russell St.

In contrast to the more elegant early mansions of Beacon Hill's South Slope, this plain boxy three-story house represents the earliest surviving residence on the North Slope. Paper stainer Appleton Prentice sold a 40 × 70–foot lot of undeveloped pasture land to trader Joseph Ditson on April 19, 1797. The Flemish bond brick house was originally freestanding, similar in character to the vernacular houses of this period that survive in Charlestown or to the nearby clapboard Nell House (1800) on Smith Court. The builder's son, Oliver Ditson, became one of nineteenth-century Boston's most successful music publishers.

Writing Credits

Keith N. Morgan


What's Nearby


Keith N. Morgan, "Joseph Ditson House", [Boston, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Massachusetts

Buildings of Massachusetts: Metropolitan Boston, Keith N. Morgan, with Richard M. Candee, Naomi Miller, Roger G. Reed, and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2009, 115-115.

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