392 Marlborough was designed by architect Samuel D. Kelley and built in 1885 by building contractor John W. Shapleigh, for speculative sale, one of three contiguous houses (390-392-394 Marlborough). John Shapleigh is shown as the owner on the original building permit application, dated September 3, 1885.
By the 1887-1888 winter season, 392 Marlborough was the home of wholesale wool merchant William Gardner Benedict and his wife, Frances Otis (Wheeler) Benedict. They previously had lived at 150 Huntington. Fannie W. Benedict is shown as the owner of 392 Marlborough on the 1888, 1898, 1908, and 1917 Bromley maps, and was the assessed owner through 1921.
Their sons, William Leonard Benedict, an investment banker, and George Wheeler Benedict, a wool merchant, lived with them.
William Leonard Benedict married in April of 1891 to Maud Benson and they moved to Selkirk Road.
George Wheeler Benedict married in October of 1891 to Anna Louise Bull. They initially lived with William and Frances Benedict at 392 Marlborough, but had moved to the Longwood district of Brookline by 1894.
William Gardner Benedict died in March of 1904. Frances Benedict continued to live at 392 Marlborough. In 1907 and 1908, William and Maud Benedict lived with her, and in 1912, George and Anna Louise Benedict lived with her.
Frances Benedict continued to live there until her death in March of 1920.
392 Marlborough was not listed in the 1921 Blue Book.
By 1921, 392 Marlborough was the home of Dr. Frederick A. Marsden, a physician. He previously had lived in an apartment at 497 Beacon. He was the assessed owner of 392 Marlborough in 1922 and 1923.
In November of 1921, he applied for (and subsequently received) permission to remodel the interior and provide a second means of egress to the third and fourth floors. The permit application indicates the use as a three-family dwelling.
In October of 1922, an egress report by the Building Department indicated the occupancy as being a doctor’s office on the first floor, one family on the second, and another family on the third floor.
Wildy May Davis was the assessed owner of 392 Marlborough in 1924.
By 1925, 392 Marlborough was the home of John Michael Grandfield, a teacher, and his mother, Mrs. Jane (Jennie) (O’Dowd) Grandfield, the widow of Dr. Michael Grandfield. They operated it as a lodging house. John Grandfield’s sister, Mary Christina Grandfield, also a teacher, lived with them. They previusly had lived 46 Sagamore in Dorchester. John Grandfield was the assessed owner of 392 Marlborough from 1925 through 1928 and is shown as the owner on the 1928 Bromley map. Jennie Grandfield was the assessed owner from 1929 through 1932.
During the 1927-1928 winter season, John Grandfield’s brother, Dr. Robert Ftancis Grandfield, a physician, also lived with them. His wife, Agnes (Keough) Grandfield, may not have been living with him (only he is listed in the 1928 Blue Book); by 1929, they were living in Taunton, where he maintained his medical practice.
Jennie Grandfield died in September of 1931. John Grandfield and Mary Grandfield continued to live at 392 Marlborough until about 1932, when they moved an apartment at 51 Massachusetts Avenue.
By the early 1930s, 392 Marlborough was owned by the Massachusetts Hospital Life Insurance Company. It was the assessed owner from 1933 through 1940 and is shown as the owner on the 1938 Bromley map.
The property was vacant in the 1932-1940 City Directories.
In July of 1940, Massachusetts Hospital Life applied for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property from a residence and doctor’s office into a lodging house. In a letter accompanying its application, the real estate manager indicated that “we have owned this building since 1931, and it has been vacant ever since. I have now sold the property and am anxious to turn it over to the new owner with all the work we promised to do by the first of the month.”
By 1941, 392 Marlborough was the home of Fred Hiram Williamson and his wife, Annie Beulah (Steeves) Price Williamson, who operated it as a lodging house. They previously had lived at 96 St. Botolph. After moving to 392 Marlborough, Fred Williamson continued to operate a lodging house at 107 St. Botolph. They separated in about 1942 and Annie Williamson continued to live at 392 Marlborough.
392 Marlborough was owned by Annie Williamson’s niece, Urbana Marie Smith, the daughter of Urbane Smith and Mabel Valencia (Steeves) Smith. She lived at 84 Bay State Road, where she operated a lodging house. She was the assessed owner of 392 Marlborough from 1941 through 1946.
Annie Williamson continued to live and operate a lodging house at 392 Marlborough until about 1946.
By 1947, 392 Marlborough was the home of Rankin Smith Dickinson, a painter, and his wife, Mabel (Haynes) Dickinson. They continued to operate it as a lodging house. They previously had lived at 41 Rutland Square. Rankin Dickinson et al were the assessed owners of 392 Marlborough from 1947. Living with them were their unmarried daughter, Madalean E. Dickinson, and their son and daughter-in-law, William Rankin Allanson Dickinson and Dorothy Ray (Bodman) Dickinson.
Rankin Dickinson died in 1953. Mabel Dickinson, Madalean Dickinson, and William and Dorothy Dickinson continued to live at 392 Marlborough. William Dickinson was an electrician.
In 1964, Madalean Dickinson purchased and moved to 304 Marlborough, which she operated as a lodging house.
Mabel Dickinson died in March of 1970. She left a 50 percent interest to her son, William, and a 50 percent interest to her daughter and her daughter-in-law, Madalean and Dorothy Dickinson.
William and Dorothy Dickinson continued to operate the property as a lodging house.
In August of 1981, William Dickinson transferred his interest in the property to Dorothy Dickinson. He died in October of 1982.
In February of 2003, 392 Marlborough LLC purchased 392 Marlborough from Dorothy and Madalean Dickinson.
In March of 2003, it filed for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property from a lodging house into three apartments.
In September of 2004, it converted the property into three condominium units, the 392 Marlborough Condominium.