When President Obama pulls up tonight at a stately Brookline home for a campaign fundraiser, he will have two hosts in the flesh Jack and Eileen Connors and a third in spirit.
Elizabeth Minot Graves was the daughter of George Minot, a Massachusetts General Hospital physician and Harvard Medical School professor who shared the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1934 for his work in developing a treatment for pernicious anemia.
In the eyes of Liza Weld Graves, the daughter of Elizabeth Minot Graves, her late mother has been expecting the president.
"My mom died shortly after Obama took office," Liza Graves wrote today in an email from her current house in Sonoma, Calif.
"She had dementia, but was thrilled when Obama was elected, so much so that through her dementia haze, she demanded that my brother call the president-elect to invite him to tea with her father... She was quite upset when we told her this was not to be.
"In an odd way, her wish is being granted tonight," she wrote.
Liza Graves laughed as she re-told the story by telephone.
"I’m a big Obama fan and I have a lot of pride in my family background and history, and I'm delighted that he will have an opportunity to see the house," she said.
George Minot built the house in the middle of the Great Depression for around $50,000. His brother, Henry, already had a house next door.
George and Marian Minot had three children: Marian, Elizabeth, and Charles. Elizabeth lived in the home until she went to Vassar College. Afterward, she married Charles Graves and they had two children: Liza and her older brother, John Graves of Hamilton.
She recalled the house as a child's playground.
"There were laundry chutes that went down to the basement," said Liza Graves. "It had a fascinating basement that we loved to explore, as well as all kinds of closets and an enormous attic."
Jack Connors, a Boston advertising executive, bought it in 1988 from its second owner.
Because of its distinction as the home of a Nobel Prize winner, it was designated a National Historic Landmark.
“We made sure that nothing on the outside changed," Connors said today after being told the story of Elizabeth Minot Graves. "It’s the way it was originally built on the outside. On the inside, of course, we made some changes. On the third-floor, there was the maids' quarters. We didn't have any maids living with us."
Liza Graves said she learned about the president's visit from a friend with whom she used to attend summer camp on Squam Lake in New Hampshire.
"She said, 'By the way, did you know this party is being held at your grandfather’s house?'" Liza Graves said.
She said not only her mother but her grandparents would be satisfied when the president comes calling tonight.
"They were old-time Brahmin Republicans, but they were not Republicans in the way they are today, so I think that my grandparents would be thrilled," she said. "They had a social conscience and they loved to entertain in that house.”
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.