352 Beacon was designed by William R. Emerson, architect, and built in 1885-1886 by D. G. Donovan and L. D. Willcutt, builders, as the home of Dr. Hasket Derby, an oculist and ophthalmologist, and his wife Sarah (Mason) Derby. The property was numbered 350 Beacon until 1889. The Derbys previously had lived at 1 Brimmer.
Dr. Derby is shown as the owner of 352 Beacon on the original building permit application, dated November 6, 1885, on the final building inspection report, dated December 2, 1886, and on the 1888, 1898, and 1908 Bromley maps.
He maintained is medical offices with Dr. J. Orne Green at 182 Marlborough from 1887 until 1909.
Hasket and Sarah Derby continued to live at 352 Beacon until 1910, when they moved to Milton. He died in August of 1914, and Sarah Derby moved to 13 Hereford.
By mid-1910, 352 Beacon was the home of Sarah A. (Brewster) Reed, the widow of sugar merchant Henry R. Reed, and their unmarried daughters: Ida Bartlett Reed, Emily Spaulding Reed, and Mary Taylor Reed. They previously had lived in an apartment at 333 Commonwealth. They also maintained a home in Marion. They continued to live at 352 Beacon in 1917.
The house was owned by Francis B. Austin (the widowed husband of Henry and Sarah Reed’s daughter, Sallie Wetherell (Reed) Austin, who had died in March of 1897) and James W. Austin, trustees, who purchased it from Hasket Derby in the spring of 1910. The transaction was reported in the Boston Globe on April 17, 1910. They are shown as the owners on the 1912 and 1917 Bromley maps, and on an August 16, 1918, Building Department inspection report.
Mary T. Reed traveled to Europe in December of 1916 to engage in war relief work. She remained there until after the war.
Sarah Reed died in 1919 and by 1920, Ida and Emily Reed were living at the Hotel Somerset.
352 Beacon was not enumerated in the 1920 US Census.
By 1921, 352 Beacon was the home of Hugh Bancroft and his wife, Jane Wallis (Waldron) Bancroft. In 1920, they had lived at 253 Newbury. Jane Bancroft is shown as the owner of 352 Beacon on the 1928 and 1938 Bromley maps. They also maintained a summer home, Deer Hill, in Cohasset.
Hugh Bancroft was an attorney. Jane Bancroft’s step-father was Clarence Walker Barron, who owned the controlling interest in Dow, Jones & Company and was publisher of the Wall Street Journal and Barron’s National Financial Weekly. Hugh Bancroft joined Clarence Barron’s publishing enterprises and, after Clarence Barron’s death in October of 1928, he became publisher of the Wall Street Journal.
Hugh Bancroft died in October of 1933. After his death, Jane Bancroft assumed control of Dow, Jones & Co. She continued to live at 352 Beacon and in Cohasset until her death in December of 1949.
In 1950, 352 Beacon was acquired by real estate dealer Joseph Goodman. Joseph Goodman et al were the assessed owners from 1951. In April of 1950, he filed for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property from a single-family dwelling into seven apartments.
The property changed hands and in November of 1982 was purchased by Diane Perry, trustee of The River View Investment Trust. In December of 1983, she applied for permission to change the occupancy from seven apartments to six apartments and one law office. Her application was denied and her appeal was dismissed by the Board of Appeal.
In November of 1983, Victor A. Conklin purchased 352 Beacon from Diane Perry. In October of 1984, he applied for (and subsequently received) permission to construct a penthouse. In February he 1985, he transferred the property to himself as trustee of the 352 Beacon Street Trust. In March of 1985, he applied for permission to construct a garage at the rear of the property. His application was denied and his appeal was dismissed without prejudice by the Board of Appeal.
By 1986, Vincent Mascia had succeeded Victor Conklin as trustee of the 352 Beacon Street Trust. In August of 1986, he applied for (and subsequently received) permission to construct a three-car garage at the rear of the building.
In September of 1986, he converted the property into seven condominium units, the 352 Beacon Street Condominium.