308 Marlborough was designed by architect Frederic H. Moore and built in 1878 by Daniel W. Beckler, builder, and Michael Nolan, mason, on lot 4 of land formerly owned by Harvey Jewell, one of five contiguous houses (302-304-306-308-310 Marlborough) built for speculative sale. Daniel Beckler is shown as the owner on the original building permit application, dated January 2, 1878. Harvey Jewell is shown as the owner (and Daniel Beckler as the former owner) on the building inspection dated December 23, 1878. Daniel Beckler also had built six contiguous houses across the street (309-311-313-315-317-319 Marlborough) between 1874 and 1877.
By the 1879-1880 winter season, 308 Marlborough was the home of Dr. Horace Dupee, a physician, and his wife, Octavia Watts (Gardner) Dupee. He also maintained his medical office there. They previously had lived (and he had maintained his office) at 84 Dover. They continued to live at 308 Marlborough in 1882, but had moved to 304 Marlborough by 1883.
By the 1882-1883 winter season, 308 Marlborough was the home of Mrs. Rachel A. (Dunlop) Thayer, the widow of lithographer and real estate investor Benjamin W. Thayer. She previously had lived at 1 Pelham.
Her unmarried adult children lived with her: Henry B. Thayer, a broker, Ida Tucker Thayer, Mary J. Thayer, and Grace Thayer. They continued to live there in 1893, but had moved to 97 Crawford by 1894.
By the 1893-1894 winter season, 308 Marlborough was the home of Dr. Benjamin Tenney, a physician, and his wife, Alice (Parker) Tenney. They had married in November of 1893 and 308 Marlborough probably was their first home together. Dr. Tenney also maintained his medical offices at the house. Alice Tenney is shown as the owner on the 1895, 1898, 1908, 1917, and 1928 Bromley maps.
In 1903, the Tenneys were joined at 308 Marlborough by Dr. Henry Melville Chase, Jr., a physician, and his wife, Blanche (Knox) Chase. They had been married in May of 1903, and 308 Marlborough probably was their first home together. Dr. Chase also maintained his medical office at 308 Marlborough with Dr. Tenney. By 1904. the Chases had moved to 237 Marlborough. Dr. Chase continued to maintain his office at 308 Marlborough until about 1908, when he moved to 409 Marlborough (which the Chases also made their home).
In 1910, and possibly earlier and later, Benjamin Tenney’s unmarried sister, Alice Tenney, also lived at 308 Marlborough.
The Tenneys two children, Dorothy Parker Tenney and Benjamin Tenney, Jr., lived with them. Dorothy Tenney married in October of 1920 to Alden Simonds Foss. After their marriage, they lived in Andover and then New York. Benjamin Tenney continued to live with his parents.
Benjamin and Alice Tenney continued to live at 308 Marlborough until his death in January of 1928. During the 1927-1928 winter season, Alden and Dorothy Foss lived with them.
By the 1928-1929 winter season, Alice Tenney was living at 67a Chestnut and Benjamin Tenney, Jr., had become a resident obstetrician at Boston Lying-In Hospital at 221 Longwood, where he also lived (he married in June of 1929 to Constance Richmond Vaillant, after which they lived at 108 Charles and then at 309 Marlborough). Alden and Dorothy Foss moved to Cambridge; he was assistant treasurer of a rubber company at the time of the 1930 US Census.
By the 1928-1929 winter season, 308 Marlborough was the home of William DeFord Bigelow and his wife Helen May (Harding) Bigelow. They previously had lived at 30 Gloucester with his father, Albert Smith Bigelow. They also maintained a home in Cohasset.
William DeFord Bigelow was a building contractor. He had served in World War I from 1916 to 1919, first as a member of the American Field Service, organized n 1915 by Harvard Professor A. Piatt Andrew to provide ambulance drivers to aid the French, and then with the US Army Ambulance Service until 1919. After the war, he became president of the New England Oil Refining Company and then a real estate dealer.
During the 1933-1934 winter season, the Bigelows were living elsewhere and 308 Marlborough was the home of Dr. Hanns Sachs. He was a psychoanalyst and professor of psychoanalysis at Harvard Medical School. An early student of Sigmund Freud’s, he had emigrated from Germany in 1932. By the 1934-1935 winter season, he had moved to 168 Marlborough.
The Bigelows were again living at 308 Marlborough during the 1934-1935 winter season. Helen Bigelow died in March of 1935, and William Bigelow moved soon thereafter.
By 1936, it was the home of Vernon Mills Hawkins, a lumber dealer, and his wife, Emma Almeida (Ruth) Hawkins. They also maintained a summer home at Plymouth. Emma A. Hawkins is shown as the owner of 308 Marlborough on the 1938 Bromley map.
Vernon Hawkins died in June of 1952. Emma Hawkins continued to live at 308 Marlborough until about 1970.
In July of 1970, Stephen Toby Kunian, an attorney, and his wife, Lois Gersten (Rome) Kunian, a real estate broker, purchased 308 Marlborough. In March of 1993, Stephen Kunian transferred his interest in the property to his wife.
In December of 2003, Lois Kunian entered into a “Preservation Restriction Agreement” with the National Architectural Trust for the purpose of ensuring the preservation of 308 Marlborough’s exterior.
308 Marlborough remained a single-family dwelling in 2014.