472 Beacon was designed by architect William Whitney Lewis and built in 1892 by Morton & Chesley, carpenters, as the home of Harry Snow Hall and his wife, Ellen Nichols (Wood) Hall. The house was built by a trust created for Harry Hall’s benefit under the will of his mother, Elizabeth (Snow) Hall, who had died in January of 1886; Harry Hall’s father, Theodore A. Hall, was the trustee.
Theodore A. Hall is shown as the owner on the original building permit application, dated January 26, 1892, and on the final building inspection report, dated December 23, 1892.
He purchased the land for 472 Beacon on Mary 28, 1891, from Mary Waldo (Lincoln) Davis, the wife of Joseph Estabrook Davis, They lived at 154 Beacon. She had purchased the lot on February 13, 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 472 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 1893-1894 winter season, Harry and Ellen Hall had made 472 Beacon their home. They previously had lived at 342 Beacon. He was a trustee of estates.
Harry Hall died in August of 1938. Ellen Hall continued to live at 472 Beacon until her death in 1956.
On November 9, 1956, 472 Beacon was acquired from Harry Hall’s estate by the National Realty Company (Charles Talanian, president), and on December 4, 1956, it was acquired from National Realty by Hyman Kahn, a jeweler and watchmaker, and his wife, Rose (Goodfader) Kahn. They operated it as a lodging house. They previously had lived at 179 Bay State Road. They continued to live at 472 Beacon in 1963, but had moved to Brookline by 1964.
The property subsequently changed hands and had been converted into an apartment house by the mid-1960s.
On December 20, 1978, 472 Beacon was acquired by Donn O’Connell. On November 7, 2000, he transferred the property to the 472 Beacon Street LLC with himself as manager of record.
In December of 2013, the 472 Beacon Street LLC applied for (and subsequently received) permission to reduce the number of units from nine to four and to build a garage at the rear.
472 Beacon remained an apartment house, assessed as a 4-to-six family dwelling, in 2017.