345 Beacon was designed and built in 1873-1874 by Frederick B. Pope for speculative sale, one of two contiguous houses (343-345 Beacon). He is shown as the owner on the original building permit applications for both houses, dated July 11, 1873, and the final inspection reports, dated May 26, 1874.
The land on which 343-345 Beacon were built was purchased by Frederick Pope on March 5, 1872, from real estate dealer Henry Whitwell. At the same time, he also purchased an equivalent lot from Henry Whitwell across the alley, fronting on Marlborough, where he built 277–279 Marlborough. The land was part of a larger parcel originally purchased from the Boston Water Power Company on February 16, 1863, by Daniel Davies, Jarvis Dwight Braman, and Grenville Temple Winthrop Braman. Grenville Braman was treasurer of the Boston Water Power Company, Jarvis Braman was his brother (and later president of the company), and Daniel Davies, a housewright and master carpenter, was Grenville Braman’s father-in-law.
Click here for an index to the deeds for 345 Beacon; click here for more information on the land at 343-345-346 Beacon; and click here for further information about all of the land between the south side of Beacon and Alley 417, from Exeter to Fairfield.
On October 5, 1874, 343-345 Beacon were offered for sale at public auction. A September 28, 1874, advertisement by the auctioneer, Samuel Hatch & Co., described 343 Beacon as a “beautiful new brown stone front house,” noting that “on the main entrance floor is an elaborate drawing room, dining room, library, and large Hall with fire-place” and that the house “contains 13 chambers” on five stories. The same advertisement described 345 Beacon as a “genteel and new brown stone front house … finished in hard wood and has been constructed in the most thorough manner with all modern improvements.”
Neither house was purchased at the auction and they remained unsold for a number of months. They were subject to several mortgages, including one from George A. Gibson (which also included 277-279 Marlborough) and several held by James C. Ayer, Frederick Ayer, and Albert G. Cook. Through a series of transactions in the fall of 1875, the various mortgage interests 345 Beacon were transferred to John L. Porter, a real estate dealer and auctioneer, who then sold the property to George A. Gibson on September 22, 1875.
On March 14, 1876, 345 Beacon was purchased from George Gibson by Anna M. (Towne) Parks, the wife of house carpenter and builder Elwell Parks. They previously had lived at 22 Joy. They operated 345 Beacon as a lodging house
Elwell and Anna Parks continued to live at 345 Beacon until about 1888, when they moved to 8 Westland.
On October 6, 1888, 345 Beacon was purchased from Annie Parks by Mary Perkins (Briggs) Greene, the wife of Robert Brayton Greene, a retired whaling merchant. They previously had lived in New Bedford. Their four unmarried daughters — Mary P. B. Greene, Frances B. Greene, Nellie L. Greene, and Catherine L. Greene — lived with them.
By the mid- to late-1890s, Mary P. B. Greene had moved to Europe.
Nellie Greene died in February of 1894, Mary (Briggs) Greene died in April of 1897, and Robert Greene died in November of 1901.
Frances and Catherine Greene continued to live at 345 Beacon. Frances Greene died in January of 1904, and Catherine Greene died in May of 1904, a suicide.
After their deaths, Mary P. B. Greene, returned to Boston and lived at 345 Beacon in until about 1906. She then returned to Europe, but continued to own the house. She was a resident of Brussels in 1917.
Mary P. B. Greene died in April of 1918. In her will, she left 345 Beacon to Samuel Lawrence Bigelow of Ann Arbor, Michigan, “in memory of the faithful devotion of his late mother, Ella H. Bigelow, to my family.” Ella H. (Brown) Bigelow was the wife of Samuel A. Bigelow, a wholesale hardware merchant; she died in March of 1893.
On June 19, 1920, Colette (Dumaresq) Whitney, the wife of stockbroker Charles Handasyde Whitney, purchased 345 Beacon from Samuel Lawrence Bigelow. The Whitneys previously had lived at 164 Riverway. They also maintained a home at Mattapoisett.
The Whitneys continued to live at 345 Beacon until about 1928, but by 1929 had moved to 344 Beacon.
On July 12, 1928, 345 Beacon was purchased from Colette Whitney by Charles Hall Bowles, an osteopathic physician. He lived in Plymouth, New Hampshire, where he married in October of 1928 to Laura Currier. After their marriage, they lived in Plymouth with his parents, Dr. George Hall Bowles and Caroline Ellsworth (Blount) Bowles.
In 1929, 345 Beacon became an annex of the Old Colony School located at 315-317 Beacon, which provided secretarial and business management training for women. In September of 1929, the school applied for (and subsequently received) permission to remodel the interior and convert the property from a single-family dwelling into a private school.
On August 30, 1932, the Boston Penny Savings Bank foreclosed on its mortgage to Charles Bowles. On the same day, it transferred the property back to Dr. Bowles, who negotiated a new mortgage with the bank.
On May 6, 1933, 345 Beacon was purchased from Charles Bowles by Miss Anna G. Sullivan, who maintained it as a lodging house. Earlier in 1933, she had lived and kept a lodging house at 293 Marlborough. In May of 1933, she applied for (and subsequently received) permission to remodel the interior of 345 Beacon. On the application, she indicated the current and proposed use was as a lodging house. She continued to live there until about 1946.
On October 15, 1946, 345 Beacon was purchased from Anna Sullivan by real estate dealer Paul Gerard Donahue.
By 1947, it was Latin American House of MIT.
On January 28, 1948, Paul Donahue transferred 345 Beacon to his aunt, Catherine J. (Donahue) Brennan, the widow of Francis J. Brennan
On September 17, 1948, 345 Beacon was acquired from Catherine Brennan by Carroll L. Lord and Benedict Gerard Groder. They operated it as a lodging house.
B. Gerard Groder also owned 193 Beacon, where he lived and operated a lodging house. By 1951, he had moved to 345 Beacon but also continued to operate the lodging house at 193 Beacon. He continued to live at 345 Beacon in the mid-1960s, but moved back to 193 Beacon by 1970.
On April 18, 1986, B. Gerard Groder transferred 345 Beacon to himself, James L. Arruda, Randy W. Robertson, and Richard J. Bostrom and his wife, Diane L. Bostrom.
On December 30, 1986, James J. Martini and his wife, Nancy J. A. Martini, purchased 345 Beacon. In February of 1987, they applied for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property into a two-family dwelling. In March of 1987, they applied for (and subsequently received) permission to add a garage at the rear of the property.
On March 11, 1991, 345 Beacon was purchased from the Martinis by Dean T. Langford and his wife, Nancy B. Langford.
On July 12, 1999, 345 Beacon was purchased from the Lanfords by James J. Mullaney and his wife, Susan Gols Mullaney.
The legal occupancy of 345 Beacon remained a two-family dwelling. However, from 2003, it was assessed as a single-family dwelling. It remained assessed as a single-family dwelling in 2015.