This unusual house was built 1859 - 1861 by Benjamin Franklin Petty, a carriage and furniture merchant, who was a native of New York and a pioneer settler of Clayton. It was patterned after a design made popular by Orson S. Fowler's book A Home for All, or the Gravel Wall and Octagon Mode of Building, which was published in New York in 1854. In April 1865, the house was used as staff headquarters for Union Cavalry Commander General Benjamin H. Grierson. Petty heirs sold the property to Judge and Mrs. Bob T. Roberts in 1901. In 1981, under the administration of Mayor Edward C. Ventress, the property was purchased from the estate of Mary Roberts Beatty Armistead by the Town of Clayton, which has overseen its renovation.