John Pickering Putnam

Personal Data

John Pickering Putnam, Jr., was born April 3, 1847 in Boston, the son of John Pickering Putnam and his wife Harriet Upham (daughter of Phineas Upham).

He married on June 30, 1885, in Framingham, to Grace Cornelia Stevens (b. 8Aug1858 in Lexington; d, 1948), daughter of Edward Otis Stevens and his wife, Elizabeth Lowe Stevens (daughter of Cyrus Stevens).

John Pickering Putnam died on February 23, 1917, in Boston.


John Pickering Putnam graduated from Harvard in 1868.  He subsequently studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1869 and then the Royal Academy in Berlin.

Putnam began practice in Boston in about 1871.   He was in partnership with George Thomas Tilden from 1873 until 1875, after which he was a sole practitioner.

He was an early designer of luxury apartment buildings, including the Hotel Cluny (1876, demolished) at 543 (233) Boylston, Hotel Charlesgate (1891) at the southeast corner of Beacon and Charlesgate East (where he and his wife were living at the time of his death in 1917), and Haddon Hall (1894) at the northwest corner of Commonwealth and Berkeley.

According to his Boston Globe obituary, he also was the “inventor of improved styles of plumbing, steam heating, and water purification.”

Back Bay Work

1875 63 Marlborough
1878 277 Dartmouth (147 Newbury)
1878 167 Marlborough
1880 165 Commonwealth
1881 19 Exeter
1884 399 Marlborough
1891 4 Charlesgate East (535 Beacon)
1894 282 Berkeley (29 Commonwealth)