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History of the Peabody School

a_peabody.jpgThe Peabody School was named in honor of the Reverend Andrew P. Peabody who was born in 1811 in Beverly, Massachusetts. Rev. Peabody graduated from Harvard College in 1826 and the Cambridge Divinity School in 1832. In 1833, he became a parish minister at the South Church in Portsmouth, NH. He received his Doctor of Divinity from Harvard in 1852. Dr. Peabody assumed the Plummer Professorship at Harvard in 1860 and undertook the duties of Preacher to the University in this position. The University of Rochester conferred the degree of Doctor of Laws on Dr. Peabody in 1863. Dr. Peabody served on the Cambridge School Committee for twelve years and was a trustee of Exeter Academy for forty-three years. He was appointed Professor Emeritus at Harvard in 1881.

Andrew Peabody was an accomplished scholar, and also a firm believer in ethical behavior. He championed many causes during his life, including peace, the end of slavery, the education of women, and better treatment for the mentally ill. The Peabody School was founded in 1889. The original building was three stories high and cost $25,000. That building was razed and a new one built in 1962 at a cost of $1,420,000. In 2003, the Peabody School was relocated to its current facility, which received extensive renovations and additions in 2001. The Peabody School today continues to represent the two things for which Andrew Peabody is remembered: the pursuit of academic excellence, coupled with a caring and respect for others.