Peabody

Settled in 1626 as part of Salem Town, incorporated in 1755 as part of Danvers and known as the South Parish. In 1855, the South Parish separated from Danvers and became the town of South Danvers, until it was renamed Peabody in 1868. Also known as Northfields, Salem Farms, and Brooksby.

Explore

Giles and Martha Corey memorial, Lowell Street near Crystal Lake. Erected 1992 near the former Corey home.

Nathaniel Felton Senior & Junior houses, 47 & 43 Felton Street. The Feltons defended their neighbor John Proctor during the Salem witch trials. Owned by the Peabody Historical Society and open to the public. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

General Gideon Foster House, 35 Washington Street. Headquarters of the Peabody Historical Society. In 1976, the tombstone of Hannah (Felton) (Endicott) Proctor (1663-1737) was discovered on land where witch trials victim John Proctor (1631-1692) lived. Hannah married John’s son Thorndike Proctor (1672-1758) in 1697. Her tombstone is in the Victorian parlor of the Foster house.

John Proctor house

John Proctor house, 348 Lowell Street. PRIVATE home. In 1666, John Proctor (1631-1692) leased this building as a residence and tavern from Emmanuel Downing. In 1700, his son Thorndike Proctor (1672-1758) bought the property from Charles Downing. John and Elizabeth Proctor lived here in 1692 when they were accused of witchcraft by their servant, Mary Warren. Front west room oldest section probably built in 1648 after an earlier fire destroyed the previous dwelling.

John Proctor plaque, Quinn Square, Lowell Street. Original plaque dated from 1902, and was replaced in 1992.

Proctor’s Tomb, Route 128 North, exit 26 Peabody intersection, island between on/off ramps. Inside a stone fence with a sign that says “1821, Proctor’s Tomb,” there’s a large rectangular box with nothing inscribed on it. It probably is the burial place of John Proctor’s descendants, since he lived there in 1692.

Research

Peabody Historical Society & Museum, 35 Washington Street (headquarters). Ruth Hill Library & Archives, at the Osborne-Salata House at 33 Washington Street, includes vital records, genealogical materials, directories, maps, manuscripts, and photographs, as well as materials on Peabody cemeteries, churches, clubs, schools and government.

Peabody Institute Library, 82 Main Street. The public library’s archives are located in the Eben Dale Sutton Room. Collection includes rare books, manuscripts, photographs, prints, artifacts, and maps. Internet Archive collection online includes annual reports, newsletters, directories, ads, letters, speeches, and books.

Online Books & Records

History of Peabody, Massachusetts By Theodore Moody Osborne (1888)

Old Naumkeag: an historical sketch of the city of Salem, and the towns of Marblehead, Peabody, Beverly, Danvers, Wenham, Manchester, Topsfield, and Middleton by Charles Henry Webber and Winfield S. Nevins (1877)