57 Marlborough was designed by Sturgis and Brigham, architects, and built in 1866-1867 by Weston & Shepard, masons, and Jonas Fitch, carpenter, to be the home of the firm’s partner, John Hubbard Sturgis, and his wife, Frances Anne (Codman) Sturgis.
The land for 57 Marlborough was purchased from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on August 1, 1863, by a trust established for Frances Sturgis’s benefit in the will of her father, Charles Russell Codman. On September 10, 1866, the trustees transferred the property to John Sturgis.
Click here for an index to the deeds for 57 Marlborough, and click here for further information about the land between the north side of Marlborough and Alley 420, from Berkeley to Clarendon.
John Sturgis’s partner, Charles Brigham, oversaw construction of the house and his correspondence with John Sturgis (as summarized by Charles Brigham historian David J. Russo) indicates the building’s rapid progress, with the work begun in the fall of 1866 and completed in late spring of 1867. The piles were driven in September of 1866 and the masons began laying the foundation that same month; the second floor was laid in October and the third floor in November. The roof was boarded in by December. By mid-January of 1867, the chimneys were built and the roof work and gutters completed. The partition studs were about to be built and the window frames were almost ready when the house was closed during the winter months. The work resumed in March of 1867, with plastering and plumbing. The ornamental cornice in the parlor was created by late May of 1867.
On October 1, 1867, the house was purchased from John Sturgis by Charles Russell Codman, Jr. He and his wife, Lucy Lyman Paine (Sturgis) Codman, made it their home. They previously had lived at 7 Park Square. They also maintained a home, Bluff Point, in Cotuit. As part of the sale, 57 Marlborough was modified to raise the roof, enabling three additional rooms in the attic story, and the finish of some of the rooms was changed to match the Codmans’ furniture.
Charles Codman and John Sturgis were double brothers-in-law: Charles Codman was the brother of Frances (Codman) Sturgis and Lucy (Sturgis) Codman was John Sturgis’s sister. Edward Codman, who lived next door at 53 Marlborough, designed by Sturgis and Brigham, was the second cousin of Charles Codman and Frances (Codman) Sturgis. Their grandfather, John Codman, was the brother of Edward Codman’s grandfather, Stephen Codman.
Charles R. Codman was an attorney. In 1862-1863, he served as a Colonel in the 45th Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteers and generally was known as Col. Codman thereafter. He subsequently served as a member of the Massachusetts Senate and then as a member of the Massachusetts House of Representative. In 1878, he was an unsuccessful candidate for Mayor of Boston.
The Codmans’ seven surviving children lived with them at 57 Marlborough: Mary Greene Sturgis Codman; Charles Russell Codman, Jr., Russell Sturgis Codman, Anne MacMaster Sturgis Codman, Susan Welles Codman, John Sturgis Codman, and Julian Codman.
In 1876 and 1877, the Codmans were in England, where Lucy Codman’s father, Russell Sturgis, lived. A former shipping merchant in the China trade, he was senior partner in the banking firm of Baring Brothers & Co. The Codmans’ eldest two children, Mary and Charles, Jr., died in 1877 while they were in England.
By mid-1877, it was the home of attorney and mining investor Horatio Ripley Bigelow and his wife Anne Lenthal (Smith) Bigelow. They previously had lived at 76 Marlborough. They also maintained a home in Hanover. Their three unmarried children lived with them: Adeline A. Bigelow, Joseph Smith Bigelow, and Anna S. Bigelow. Joseph Bigelow also was a mining investor.
Joseph Bigelow married in April of 1877 to Mary Cleveland Bryant, the first wedding performed at the new Trinity Church in Copley Square. After their marriage, they lived primarily in Cohasset until 1882, when they moved to the home they built at 251 Commonwealth.
By 1878, Horatio and Anne Bigelow and their daughters had moved to 254 Beacon.
57 Marlborough was listed in the 1878 Blue Book (for the 1877-1878 winter season) as the home of J. W. Paige.
The Codmans resumed living at 57 Marlborough by mid-1878. That fall, he ran for mayor and was defeated by Frederick O. Prince of 311 Beacon.
In the mid-1880s, the Codmans lived in Brookline and leased 57 Marlborough to others.
During the 1884-1885 winter season, 57 Marlborough was the home of W. A. Burnham, possibly architect William Appleton Burnham and his wife, Alice (Monroe) Burnham, whose permanent Boston residence in the mid-1880s was at 87 Beacon.
During the 1885-1886 winter season, 57 Marlborough was the home of attorney William Sohier Dexter, a widower. He previously had lived at 24 Mt. Vernon. By the next season, he had moved to the new new home he had built at 18 Exeter.
By the 1886-1887 winter season, the Codmans were living at 57 Marlborough once again.
Anne Codman married in November of 1892 to Henry Bromfield Cabot, a lawyer. After their marriage, they lived in Brookline.
Susan Codman married in May of 1896 to Redington Fiske, an executive with the New England Telephone and Telegraph Company and later an investment banker. After their marriage, they lived in Chestnut Hill.
Julian Codman, a lawyer, married in April of 1897 to Norah Chadwick of 270 Clarendon. After their marriage, they lived at 95 Mt. Vernon.
John Codman, an electrical engineer, married in April of 1901 to his first cousin, Susan Sargent Codman of 8 Fairfield, the daughter of Charles Codman’s half-brother, Richard Codman, a widower. After their marriage, John and Susan Codman lived at 841 Boylston.
During the 1903-1904 and 1904-1905 winter seasons, Charles and Lucy Codman were joined at 57 Marlborough by Richard Codman and his daughter, Margaret Codman. Their usual residence was on Cottage Avenue in West Roxbury, where they resumed living in 1905.
By mid-1905, Charles and Lucy Codman had moved to Brookline, where they were living at the time of Lucy Codman’s death in January of 1907. He continued to own 57 Marlborough and lease it to others.
By the 1905-1906 winter season, 57 Marlborough was the home of attorney Arthur Lyman and his wife Susan Channing (Cabot) Lyman. They previously had lived in Brookline. They also maintained a home in Waltham, where he had served as Mayor.
Charles Codman died in October of 1918, and on June 21, 1919, Arthur Lyman purchased 57 Marlborough from his surviving children: Russell Strugis Codman; Anne (Codman) Cabot, Susan (Codman) Fiske, John Sturgis Codman, and Julian Codman.
The Lymans continued to live at 57 Marlborough during the 1928-1929 winter season, after which they made their Waltham home their year-round residence.
The house was not listed in the 1930-1934 Blue Books nor in the Lists of Residents, and was shown as vacant in the 1930-1934 City Directories.
On November 29, 1933, 57 Marlborough was purchased from Arthur Lyman’s estate by Dr. Charles Alonzo Draper, a chiropodist. He and his wife, Gladys Lucie (Garrett) Draper, made it their home. They previously had lived (and he had maintained his office) in Dorchester. Their son, Charles Elliot Draper, a real estate dealer, lived with them.
In October of 1933, prior to taking title to the property, Dr. Draper filed for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the house from a residence to a doctor’s office and residence. In March of 1934, he filed for (and received) permission to convert the house into a three-family dwelling.
In December of 1935, Dr. Draper acquired 197 Beacon, which he converted into apartments.
On January 13, 1936, he transferred 57 Marlborough into his wife’s name.
In October of 1941, Charles Elliot Draper acquired 199 Beacon, which he converted into a lodging house.
57 Marlborough remained the Drapers’ residence and his medical office in 1945.
By the mid-1940s, they had remodeled the house into ten apartments and a doctor’s office. In February of 1945, they were cited for failing to obtain Building Department approval of the change in occupancy.
On May 31, 1945, 57 Marlborough was acquired from Gladys Draper by William J. Dooley. Charles and Gladys Draper and Charles Elliot Draper moved to 199 Beacon.
57 Marlborough subsequently changed hands and on August 14, 1945, was acquired by real estate dealer Ray C. Johnson, who transferred it on the same day to Edna M. Hudson and Herbert C. Sharpe.
In April of 1946, Ray Johnson filed for (and subsequently received) permission to legalize the occupancy as nine apartments and two lodging units.
The property changed hands again, and on October 31, 1946, was acquired by Tanya Natalie (Polsky) Richmond Saletsky Pearlman, the wife of Nathan Pearlman, a furniture dealer. They lived in Dorchester and later in Brookline.
By 1950, the Pearlmans had installed new kitchens and bathrooms and the occupancy was established as eleven apartments (the distinction between apartments and lodging units being eliminated).
Natalie Pearlman died in August of 1960. Nathan Pearlman continued to own 57 Marlborough. During the Pearlmans ownership, it suffered fire damage at least twice, once in 1959 (when there was damage to the fourth and fifth floors, in the front), and again in 1970 (when there was minor damage to the fourth floor).
On December 28, 1973, 57 Marlborough was purchased from Nathan Pearlman by Hugh Scott Mellor and Ralph David Fraser, trustees of the Marlborough 57 Trust.
On August 1, 1979, 57 Marlborough was purchased from Hugh Scott Mellor and Ralph David Fraser by Stephen V. Miller, trustee of the 57 Marlborough Street Trust.
On December 11, 1979, the trust transferred the property to the 57 Marlborough Realty Corporation (Paul G. Roiff, president and treasurer). That same day, it converted the property into eleven condominium units, the 57 Marlborough Street Condominium.
In January of 1980, the 57 Marlborough Realty Corporation applied for (and subsequently received) permission to remodel the house into six floor-through units, and on July 4, 1980, it amended the condominium master deed to reduce the number of condominiums to six.