The land that Peabody occupies was originally called Elkhorn Ranch because of the large elk horns that were displayed at the entrance. It was purchased by Arthur DeKoevend many years ago. He came here from Alsace-Lorraine and spoke six languages. His wife was Swiss and was a singer and yodeler on the stage. In the early days the family greenhouse was situated near the entrance to the present Chapel Hill Cemetery, and in it the family grew lettuce and pansies. The DeKoevend home was across the street on Steele Street. They also had an artesian well that was used for thirty years. Mr. and Mrs. DeKoevend had five boys and one girl. The property went to them after the death of their parents.
Peabody Elementary School was established on seven acres of the land in 1961. Peabody Elementary School was named after Elizabeth Palmer Peabody.
Elizabeth Palmer Peabody (1804-1894):
Elizabeth Peabody was a U. S. Educationalist born May 16, 1804 in Billerica, Massachusetts. She was educated in a small private school by her gifted mother who also taught her sisters, Mrs. Nathaniel Hawthorne and Mrs. Horace Mann.
Miss Peabody began her own teaching career at the very early age of 16. In 1839 she opened her West Street Book Store which became a club for the intellectual community of Boston.
On her own printing press she published a translation of Margaret Fuller and those of Nathaniel Hawthorne's earliest books. In 1860, America's first kindergarten was opened in Boston by Miss Peabody. Later she went to Europe to study the educational methods of Friedrich Froebel, a German educator who founded the kindergarten system.
Miss Peabody died at Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts on January 3, 1894.