464 Beacon was designed by Rotch and Tilden, architects, and built in 1891-1892 by Whidden & Co., builders and contractors, as the home of Louis Curtis and his wife, Fanny Leland (Richardson) Curtis. He is shown as the owner on the original building permit application, dated September 22, 1891, on an October 10, 1892, application to build a storage building at the rear of the property, and on the final building inspection report for the house, dated November 17, 1892.
The land for 464 Beacon was purchased by Fanny Curtis on February 6, 1891, from real estate investor Nathan Matthews. It was part of a larger parcel Nathan Matthews had purchased on August 1, 1890, from the Boston and Roxbury Mill Corporation.
The deeds from the Boston and Roxbury Mill Corporation for the land between Hereford and Massachusetts Avenue included language specifying that only dwellings and associated outbuildings (including stables) could be built on the land and that the buildings were to be set back 20 feet from Beacon. The deeds for the land between 460 Beacon and Massachusetts Avenue were entered into in the early 1890s and also included restrictions limiting to one story any building in the rear north of a line 90 feet from Beacon. The deeds for the land between Hereford and 458 Beacon, which were from 1886, did not include language limiting buildings in the rear. As a result, the owners of the land at 448-458 Beacon entered into individual agreements to limit the depth of the houses that were built on their land and restrict the height of outbuildings in the rear to one story. On August 2, 1909, all of the owners of the property on the north side of Beacon between Hereford and Massachusetts Avenue (other than the Mt. Vernon Church) entered into an agreement to “continue for twenty years longer [to December 31, 1929] the existing freedom from irregular building and obstruction of view which they now enjoy from the rear portion of their houses.” On December 30, 1929, the owners of 448-480 Beacon extended this agreement to expire on December 31, 1939.
Click here for an index to the deeds for 464 Beacon, including additional information on the deeds and agreements limiting buildings in the rear of the lot, and click here for further information on the land on the north side of Beacon, including the Storrow Memorial Embankment on the Esplanade.
By the 1892-1893 winter season, Louis and Fanny Curtis had made 464 Beacon their home. They previously had lived at 299 Beacon. They also maintained a home in Nahant. Their raised their two sons, — Louis Curtis, Jr., and Laurence Curtis, II – at 464 Beacon.
Louis Curtis was an investment banker, the resident partner in Boston of Brown Brothers & Co.
In June of 1911, Louis Curtis applied for (and subsequently received) permission to add a story to the house at the rear, designed by architect George T. Tilden.
In May of 1919, Fanny Curtis applied for (and subsequently received) permission to add a garage at the rear, designed by architects Bellows and Aldrich.
Louis Curtis, Jr., was an investment banker with his father’s firm, Brown Brothers & Co. In about 1921, he moved to New York City to join the firm’s office there. In June of 1921, he married to Mary Sloan Colt. They returned to Boston by the 1922-1923 winter season and lived at 447 Beacon. He rejoined the Boston office of Brown Brothers & Co. and became resident partner in 1925 following his father’s retirement.
Laurence Curtis, II, was a lawyer. He moved to Washington DC in the fall of 1921 to serve for a year as clerk to Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. He returned to Boston by the 1922-1923 winter season and resumed living at 464 Beacon with his parents.
Louis Curtis, Sr., died in March of 1931. Fanny Curtis and Laurence Curtis continued to live at 464 Beacon during the 1935-1936 winter season, after which they moved, Fanny Curtis to Brookline and Laurence Curtis to the Hotel Lincolnshire at 20 Charles.
On October 15, 1936, 464 Beacon was purchased from Fanny Curtis by Willette Marie (McKeever) Cheever, the wife of Dr. Austin Walter Cheever. They previously had lived in Brookline.
Austin Cheever was a dermatologist. A pharmacist by training, Willette Cheever was a dance teacher.
In December of 1936, Austin Cheever applied for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property from a single-family dwelling into a dwelling and doctor’s office.
The Cheevers continued to live at 464 Beacon — and he continued to maintain his medical offices there — until about 1962.
The house was shown as vacant in the 1963 City Directory.
On December 31, 1963, 464 Beacon was purchased from Donald Devine and Robert Freedman by Kenneth L. Shaw. In January of 1964, he applied for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property from a dwelling and doctor’s office into ten apartments. He lived in one of the apartments.
On December 8, 1965, 464 Beacon was acquired from Kenneth Shaw by Abbot M. Peterson, III, and his wife, Barbara E. (Pease) Peterson. They previously had lived at 213 Beacon, which she continued to own and operate as a lodging house. They lived in one of the apartments at 464 Beacon until about 1971, when they moved to Wellesley.
On July 24, 1979, the Petersons transferred the property to Abbot Peterson, III, and Kenneth Shaw.
In November of 1981, Kenneth Shaw applied for (and subsequently received) permission to increase the number of apartments from ten to eleven.
On January 9, 1984, Abbot Peterson, III, and Kenneth Shaw transferred the property back to Abbot and Barbara Peterson.
On December 24, 1987, Abbot and Barbara Peterson converted 464 Beacon into eleven condominium units, the 464 Beacon Street Condominium.