460 Beacon

460 Beacon (2015)

Lot 25' x 150' (3,750 sf)

Lot 25′ x 150′ (3,750 sf)

460 Beacon is located on north side of Beacon, between Hereford and Massachusetts Avenue, with 458 Beacon to the east and 462 Beacon to the west.

460 Beacon was designed by architect Francis R. Allen of Allen and Kenway, and built in 1891 by Connery & Wentworth, builders, as the home of wholesale lumber merchant George Howe Davenport and his wife, Camilla H. (Chace) Davenport.  They had lived at the Hotel Victoria at 273 Dartmouth while awaiting the completion of 460 Beacon, and before that at 192 Marlborough.

George Davenport is shown as the owner of 460 Beacon on the original building permit application for 460 Beacon, dated April 16, 1891, and on the 1895 Bromley map. Camilla C. Davenport is shown as the owner on the 1898, 1908, 1912, 1917, and 1928 Bromley maps.

The Davenports also maintained a home in Marblehead.

In 1899, George Davenport commissioned Peabody and Stearns to design a remodeling of portions of the interior of 460 Beacon. Plans for the remodeling (as well as Allen and Kenway’s original framing plans for 460 Beacon) are included in the Peabody and Stearns Collection in the Boston Public Library’s Arts Department (reference PS/MA.049).

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

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

George Davenport died in November of 1932.  Camilla Davenport continued to live at 460 Beacon until about 1934, noting in the 1934 Blue Book that she would spend the winter at the Ritz Carlton Hotel.  By 1935, she had moved to an apartment at 6 Arlington.

460 Beacon was not listed in the 1935-1937 Blue Books and was shown as vacant in the 1935-1937 city directories.

In early 1937, real estate dealer Ray C. Johnson purchased 460 Beacon from Camilla Davenport.  The transaction was reported in the Boston Globe on January 25, 1937.  He subsequently sold the property to Mary F. Donlan.

In July of 1937, the Alumni Association of the Nu Delta Chapter of Phi Mu Delta acquired 460 Beacon from Mary Donlan.  It is shown as the owner of 460 Beacon on the 1938 Bromley map.

Phi Mu Delta made 460 Beacon its fraternity house.  In January of 1947, about ten years after acquiring the property, it applied for (and subsequently received) permission to legalize its occupancy as a dormitory, making the necessary improvements in egress.

In September of 1999, it applied for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property into a dormitory and place of assembly.

460 Beacon remained the Phi Mu Delta fraternity house in 2015.