7 Exeter was designed by Peabody and Stearns, architects, and built ca. 1872 for building contractor George Wheatland Jr., for speculative sale, one of three contiguous houses (7-9-11 Exeter).
George Wheatland, Jr., is shown as the owner of 7 and 9 Exeter on the 1874 Hopkins map.
In 1875, 7 Exeter was the home of Mrs. Nancy King (Dabney) Bishop, the widow of William Winsor Bishop. Her usual residence was in Providence, where her husband had been a cotton manufacturer and bleachery operator before his death in January of 1865, killed with two of their daughters in the sinking of the SS Melville.
7 Exeter was not listed in the 1876 Blue Book.
By 1877, it was the home of Miss Catharine C. Thomas. She previously had lived with her father and step-mother, banker William Thomas and Cornelia (Bangs) Thomas, at 10 Marlborough. She is shown as the owner of 7 Exeter the 1883, 1888, 1898, 1908, and 1917 Bromley maps. She also is shown as the owner of 9 Exeter on the 1898 map.
During the 1879-1880 winter season, Catharine Thomas was living elsewhere and 7 Exeter was the home of Mrs. Lurinda B, (Forbush) Barrett, the wife of Dr. William Marshall Barrett, a physician. She was secretary of the Massachusetts Women’s Christian Temperance Union. She and her husband lived at the Hotel Union at 303 Shawmut in 1878 and were living there again by mid-1880 at the time of the US Census; by 1882, they were living in Somerville.
During the 1880-1881 season, it was the home of coal merchant Henry Kenney Horton, Jr., and his wife, Marian Glyde (Bigelow) Horton. They had lived at 254 Beacon during the previous season. By the 1882-1883 season, they were living at 287 Beacon.
7 Exeter was not listed in the 1882 Blue Book.
By the 1882-1883 winter season, Miss Thomas was once again living at 7 Exeter. She continued to live there until her death in 1918.
In August of 1919, Sara M. Fay purchased 7 Exeter from Winslow Warren, executor of the Estate of Catharine Thomas. Sara Fay does not appear to have lived there.
During the 1922-1923 winter season, the residents included Mrs. Catherine (Gardner) Boyer, the former wife of automobile dealer Francis Buckner Boyer. She moved to 5 Exeter by mid-1923.
By 1924, 7 Exeter was owned by Henry Lawrence Whitney, a city planner for Boston, and his wife, Rosamond (Houghton) Whitney. They had been married in August of 1923 and they made one of the apartments at 7 Exeter their home. Prior to their marriage, he had lived at 232 Marlborough with his mother, Georgianna (Hayward) Whitney, the widow of Joseph Cutler Whitney. Henry Whitney is shown as the owner of 7 Exeter on the 1928 and 1938 Bromley map. They also maintained a summer home at 676 Brush Hill Road in Milton (one of the oldest houses in Milton, built in 1663 by Robert Tucker).
The Whitneys continued to live at 7 Exeter until about 1937, when they made their home in Milton their year-round residence.
From about 1942, one of the apartments at 7 Exeter was the home of Henry Lowell Mason, Jr., an attorney, and his wife, Fanny Crowninshield (Homans) Warren Mason. They had been married in August of 1939 after which they had lived at 37 River. Before their marriage, he had lived at 134 Beacon with his parents, Henry and Estella (Kimball) Mason. They continued to live at 7 Exeter in 1947, but had moved to 289 Marlborough by 1948.
7 Exeter remained a five-unit apartment house in the 1960s.
In September of 1967, it was purchased by Webster F. Williams, Jr. In June of 1992, he filed for (and subsequently received) permission to construct a driveway giving access to the rear of 9 Exeter, and on December 28, 1992, he entered into a reciprocal easement agreement with J. Brent Finnegan and Karen Finnegan, owners of 9 Exeter, for the construction and use of parking spaces behind 7 Exeter and 9 Exeter.
The property changed hands and in March of 1997 was purchased by Robert M. Barsamian, trustee of the Exeter 7 Holdings Trust. In April of 1997, he filed for (and subsequently received) permission to convert the property from a five-unit apartment house back into a single-family dwelling.
The property changed hands. It remained assessed as a single-family dwelling in 2014.