Union Club of Boston

7-8 Park Street, Boston, Massachusetts

Built in 1809, for John Gore (1769-1817), the nephew of Christoper Gore of Gore Place, Governor of Massachusetts. All of the houses on Park Street on Beacon Hill were designed by Charles Bulfinch and Gore purchased the lots on which Numbers and 7 and 8 were built from his uncle's brother-in-law, William Payne. Gore lived with his family in No. 8 and either leased or sold No. 7 to "the famous surgeon" Dr John Collins Warren (1778-1856), Dean of Harvard Medical School, President of the American Medical Association and founding member of the Massachusetts General Hospital. When Gore died in 1817, he left his mansion to his widow who continued to live here until her death in 1836. It was then purchased by Abbott Lawrence, co-founder of the City of Lawrence and a benefactor of Harvard. In 1838, he hired architect Gridley J.F. Bryant (1816-1899) and the house underwent a metamorphic change costing $42,000....

This house is best associated with...

John Gore

John Gore, of 8 Park Street, Boston, Massachusetts


Mary (Babcock) Russell

Mrs Mary Green (Babcock) Gore, Russell


Abbott Lawrence

Abbott Lawrence, of Boston; U.S. Minister to the United Kingdom


Katherine Bigelow

Mrs Katherine (Bigelow) Lawrence


Bryant's renovations saw the addition of the Regency-style wrought iron balconies and the reception rooms on the second floor are among the best surviving examples of Greek-Revival interior decoration in the city. Lawrence died in 1855 and in 1863 it became the home of the Union Club of Boston. The founding members who included Edward Everett, Charles Eliot Norton, John Murray Forbes, and Oliver Wendell Holmes left the Somerset Club when their fellow members began to express anti-Union sympathies.

In the same year the club was incorporated, Bryant was brought back with John Hubbard Sturgis to make various changes for its new role. The original gable roof was replaced by an additional fifth floor in the early 1880s by Peabody & Stearns; and, in 1896, No. 7 next door was integrated into the club and given a 5th floor and matching facade.

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Contributed by Mark Meredith on 24/05/2020 and last updated on 27/03/2023.


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