Glimpsed through the trees in the image above is a house that was once the home of two of the most famous people of the twentieth century. Located at 232 Tophet Road in Roxbury, it has been much altered over the years. It was built for a Revolutionary War veteran and was later the residence of playwright Arthur Miller and his wife (from 1956 to 1961) Marilyn Monroe. The couple had originally planned to replace the old farmhouse with a new home designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, but they decided the plan produced by the famous architect was too impractical and expensive. According to Homes of Old Woodbury (1959), p. 247, the house was built about 1783 by Captain David Leavenworth. Sheldon Leavenworth sold it to Elliot Beardsley in 1847 and twenty years later it was acquired by Charles N. Ward. Frederick H. Leavenworth bought the house in 1888 and his son sold it to Miller in 1949, the year the playwright wrote Death of a Salesman at his first Roxbury home. Miller lived in Roxbury from 1947 until his death in 2005. The Leavenworth House has has remained in Miller’s family. Ten years after his death, his daughter donated a 100-acre parcel to the Roxbury Land Trust.
Colonial, Houses, Roxbury