The Senior Advocates of our congregation have been busy attentively listening to different members of our congregation and writing down some of their life stories. Last month we shared some things about Vilma Johnson. This month we can get to know Pete and Jane Peabody better. We give God thanks for the incredible gift, God has given us in each other. We give special thanks this month for Pete and Jane!
Pete (Edmund) Peabody was born in Gardner, MA. His favorite childhood memory is of the summers when he would visit with his grandparents in Maine. At about age 8 or 9, his grandfather would take him to York Beach. Pete loved swimming in the surf and had an unusual companion. A certain seal enjoyed his company, and would swim back and forth with him, as long as Pete could stay there in the water.
Pete joined the Army in the late forties and was stationed at a hidden air base referred to as “Mile 26” in Alaska. He was telephone wire chief and handled communications between planes and another base in Omaha, Nebraska.
Soon after marrying Jane, they moved to Madawaska, Maine. It was the northernmost town in the United States. He had a contract with the telephone company, AT&T, which sent him to various paper companies to purchase paper solely for the purpose of making telephone book pages.
Pete and Jane attended church in Edmonston, New Brunswick, Canada, because it was the nearest Methodist Church. Their youngest children, Dacia, and Edmund were baptized there. The family lived there for a few years until Pete was transferred to Rhode Island.
Eventually, they moved to Cape Cod, where Pete bought a boat, and along with their son became a commercial fisherman. Long days of fishing for Cod with the long line, as far as sixty miles out at sea.
Later, Pete and Jane bought the Red Cottage in Dennis. For several years they had a successful restaurant business there.
The Peabodys have faithfully traveled through seventy years of marriage, through the easy times and the not so easy ones. And they have always been faithful Methodists!
Jane Walton was born in Leominster, MA and had a brother and two sisters. They lived with their parents on a farm in Sterling. Jane attended school to the ninth grade in Sterling and then proceeded to high school in Leominster.
For transportation they used a horse and buggy, and since her father worked long hours on the farm, they could not get to church. When older, she was able to drive herself to the Methodist Church in Leominster.
One of the fondest memories that Jane could recall (among many) was the wonderful times they had at Thanksgiving. Her mother had nine siblings, and the night before Thanksgiving many of the younger aunts and uncles would come to the farm. They would pitch in and peel all the vegetables, and then spend the night. The next day, the adults would do the cooking, while the young people would go to a local football game. When the young folks returned, the feast would be ready.
After the meal was over, another tradition took place. They would all go out to a certain field which had a high wall, and one aunt and one uncle would have a pumpkin pie throwing fight! (Jane noted that those several pies did not have all the ingredients as the ones they ate). This tradition carried on for several years until those aunts and uncles had families of their own.
Jane eventually married Edmund Peabody, “Pete.”
When asked about a childhood photo, the only ones included others, likely taken by relatives. Then she recovered these early school photos!