141 Beacon

141 Beacon (2018)

Lot 22' x 112' (2,464 sf)

Lot 22′ x 112′ (2,464 sf)

141 Beacon is located on the south side of Beacon, between Arlington and Berkeley, with 139 Beacon to the east and 143 Beacon to the west.

141 Beacon was built in 1860-1861, one of two contiguous houses (139-141 Beacon) designed by architect Gridley J. F. Bryant as a symmetrical pair with 141 Beacon two feet wider than 139 Beacon.

Bainbridge Bunting’s Houses of Boston’s Back Bay does not attribute 139-141 Beacon to a specific architect, and Roger Reed’s Building Victorian Boston does not include them among Gridley Bryant’s work. However, a September 24, 1860, Boston Post article reported that they were under construction, “will be finished in a plain but substantial manner,” and were designed by Gridley J. F. Bryant.

141 Beacon was built by Ebenezer Johnson, a mason and builder, as the home of Eunice Hooper and her sister, Mary Ingalls Hooper. They previously had lived in Marblehead, where they continued to also maintain a home.

The Misses Hooper purchased the land for 141 Beacon on January 25, 1860, from John Lowell Gardner, a shipping merchant and real estate investor. He and his wife, Catharine Elizabeth (Peabody) Gardner, lived at 7 Beacon, and would build a new home at 182 Beacon in the mid-1860s. The lot was part of a larger parcel John L. Gardner had purchased on September 15, 1859, from William W. Goddard and T. Bigelow Lawrence.  That parcel was part of a tract of land that William Goddard and T. Bigelow Lawrence had purchased from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on August 1, 1857, that included all of the land on the south side of Beacon Street from Arlington to Berkeley.

Click here for an index to the deeds for 141 Beacon, and click here for further information about the land on the south side of Beacon from Arlington to Berkeley, north of Alley 421.

On March 3, 1860, Ebenezer Johnson filed a Notice of Intention to Build with the Board of Aldermen, showing himself and Robert William Hooper (Eunice and Catherine Hooper’s brother) as the owner.  Construction probably started soon thereafter.

On September 3, 1860, Ebenezer Johnson and Robert Hooper joined with land owners and builders of the houses under construction at 131-139 Beacon and 143-147 Beacon in a petition to the Board of Aldermen seeking permission to remove “the very objectionable Poplar trees in front of their premises.”  The petition was granted by the Board.

Eunice and Mary Hooper lived at 141 Beacon with their mother, Eunice (Hooper) Hooper, the widow of merchant John Hooper. She died in December of 1866.

Mary Ingalls Hooper died in January of 1874. Eunice Hooper continued to live at 141 Beacon and in Marblehead.

By the late 1880s, Eunice Hooper had been joined at 141 Beacon by her nieces, Jane Greene Hooper and Elizabeth Reed Hooper, daughters of her brother Nathaniel Hooper and his first wife, Harriet Rose (Wilson) Hooper, and her nephew, Samuel Hooper Hooper, son of Nathaniel Hooper and his second wife, Emma Lincoln (Bird) Hooper. They previously had lived at 264 Beacon with their father, who had died in May of 1886.

Samuel Hooper Hooper was a real estate investor and investment banker. In later years, he became a wine importer.  He organized and led the Boston Assembly society balls for many years, and was a founder and the first president of the Tennis and Racquet Club.

Eunice Hooper died in March of 1893. Samuel, Jane, and Elizabeth Hooper continued to live at 141 Beacon.

139-141 Beacon (2018)

Jane Hooper married in April of 1895 to Edward Gardiner Gardiner, a biologist, and moved to 131 Mt. Vernon. Elizabeth Hooper married in July of 1899 to Cornelius Grinnell Betton, an architect, and moved to Newport (he died in May of 1901).  Samuel Hooper Hooper continued to live at 141 Beacon in 1899, but by 1900, had moved to an apartment at 112 Pinckney.

In June of 1900, at the time of the 1900 US Census, 141 Beacon was the home of Henry Demarest Lloyd and his wife, Jessie (Bross) Lloyd.  Henry Lloyd was a leader of the progressive reform movement and had authored several books advocating reforms of business and politics.  He had served as an editor of the Chicago Tribune until 1885 and is credited as being America’s first investigative reporter.

The house was not listed in the 1901 Blue Book.

141 Beacon had been inherited by Elizabeth (Hooper) Betton and on March 21, 1900, she transferred the property to her husband. On May 13, 1901, it was acquired from Cornelius Betton by Samuel Hooper Hooper, and on June 1, 1901, it was acquired from him by Edmund Dwight Codman.

Edmund Codman and his wife, Annie (Briggs) Codman, made 141 Beacon their Boston home. They previously had lived at 9 Chestnut. They also maintained a home in Westwood, Massachusetts.

Edmund Codman was an attorney.  During his career, he also served as president of the Fitchburg Railroad, treasurer of the National Dock and Storage Warehouse Co., and vice president of the Massachusetts Hospital Life Insurance Company.

In July of 1938, he applied for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the house from a single-family dwelling into a lodging house.  On the same day, Laura Davies filed to convert 139 Beacon into a lodging house.  They each also filed to erect fire balconies between the two houses.

139-141 Beacon (ca. 1942), photograph by Bainbridge Bunting, courtesy of The Gleason Partnership

139-141 Beacon (ca. 1942), photograph by Bainbridge Bunting, courtesy of The Gleason Partnership

The Codmans moved soon thereafter to Westwood.

By 1939, William Cornell, an insurance salesman, and his wife, Gertrude Dake (Lane) Cornell, operated the lodging houses at 139 and 141 Beacon.  They lived at 139 Beacon in 1939, but had moved to 141 Beacon by 1940.  They continued to live and operate the lodging house at 141 Beacon until 1942.

By 1942, 141 Beacon was the home of Elizabeth Krauss, who continued to operate it as a lodging house. She previously had lived in New York. Her brother-in-law and sister, Francis Ford Flanagan and Catharine (Krauss) Flanagan, owned 139 Beacon and operated it as a lodging house.

During the 1940s, Elizabeth Krauss bought several lodging houses and apartment buildings in the Back Bay. In July of 1942, she purchased 115 Beacon. In June of 1944, she purchased 418 Beacon (which she sold in 1946 but continued to operate as a lodging house until the mid-1950s). In August of 1944, she and her sister, Catharine Flanagan, purchased 131 Beacon (which they sold in 1959). In January of 1946, she purchased 391 Beacon. And in July of 1946, she purchased 70 Commonwealth (which she sold in 1950).

She continued to lease 141 Beacon and operate it as a lodging house, and on March 2, 1948, she purchased it from the estate of Edmund Codman (Anne Codman had died in May of 1938 and Edmund Codman died in February of 1947).

Catharine (Krauss) Flanagan died in February of 1970 and in September of 1972, Elizabeth Krauss acquired 139 Beacon from their sister, Marie (Krauss) Majane, who had inherited it from Catharine Flanagan.

Elizabeth Krauss continued to own and live at 141 Beacon in the 1980s and to own 115 Beacon, 139 Beacon, and 391 Beacon.

In 1989, Gary Douglas Rose (the grandson of Elizabeth Krauss’s brother, Andrew Krauss)  and Hanson S. Reynolds were named co-guardians of Elizabeth Krauss.  On October 10, 1997, they transferred 115 Beacon to themselves as trustees of the Elizabeth Krauss Charitable Remainder Annuity Trust. On the same day, they also transferred 139 Beacon, 141 Beacon, and 391 Beacon to themselves as trustees of the Elizabeth Krauss 1997 Revocable Trust.

On October 30, 1997, 115 Beacon and 139-141 Beacon were purchased from the trustees by Fisher College.

In December of 1999, Fisher College filed to change the legal occupancy of both 139 Beacon and 141 Beacon from lodging houses to twelve apartments each. The applications were approved but were abandoned, and both properties continued to be operated as lodging houses.

141 Beacon was assessed as an apartment house in 2022.

As of 2022, Fisher College owned 102-104106108110112114116118 Beacon, 111 Beacon, 115 Beacon, 131133 Beacon, 139-141 Beacon, and 1 Arlington.