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PEABODY, a township of Essex county, Massachusetts, U.S.A., in the eastern part of the state, 2 m. N.W. of Salem. Pop. (1905) 13,098; (1910) 15,721. It is served by the Boston & Maine railroad. The township covers an area of 17 sq. m. Its principal village is also known as Peabody. It contains the Peabody institute (1852), a gift of George Peabody; in 1909 the institute had a library of 43,200 vols., and in connexion with it is the Eben Dale Sutton reference library, containing 4100 vols. in 1909. In the institute is the portrait of Queen Victoria given by her to Mr Peabody. Among the places of interest in the township are the birthplace of George Peabody, the home of Rufus Choate (who lived here from 1823 to 1828), and the old burying-ground, where many soldiers of the War of Independence are buried; and the town has a Lexington monument, dedicated in 1835, and a soldiers' monument, dedicated in 1881. Manufacturing is the principal industry, and leather is the principal product; among other manufactures are shoes, gloves, glue and carriages. The value of the factory products in 1905 was $10,236,669, an increase of 47.4% over that for 1900, and of the total the leather product represented 77.3%.

Peabody was originally a part of the township of Salem. In 1752 the district of Danvers was created, and in 1757 this district was made a separate township. In 1855 the township was divided into Danvers and South Danvers, and in 1868 the name of South Danvers was changed to Peabody, in honour of George Peabody.

See Old Naumkeag (Salem, 1877), by C. H. Webber and W. H. Nevins.