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Catalog Number 101.14
Title Robert S. Peabody correspondence and other material
Date 1863-1904
Collection size 1 linear foot
Creator Peabody, Robert S.
Administrative/Biographical History Robert Singleton Peabody (1837-1904) was born in Ohio, graduated from Phillips Academy, Class of 1857, and completed law school at Harvard University. At Phillips Academy he cultivated a talent for classical languages and graduated at the head of his class. A favorite nephew of self-made man and philanthropist George Peabody, Robert established a lucrative law practice in Vermont prior to relocating to Germantown, Philadelphia, PA. He was married to Margaret Augusta Goddard; they had one child, Charles.

Peabody established a rapport with Warren Moorehead sometime in the late 1880s or in early 1890, and Moorehead helped him amass some 40,000 to 50,000 objects by the close of the 19th century. In 1901, at age 64, Robert Peabody provided personal funds to build a museum at Phillips Academy Andover to house his collection, foster an interest in archaeology and American Indians among the boys at his alma mater and to provide social spaces for the academy's students. Peabody was largely confined to his house due to physical ailments during the last four or five years of his life, and died not long after the museum was opened.
Scope & Content This collection is mainly comprised of letters to Robert S. Peabody, addressed to his Germantown, Philadelphia, PA residence. Some are personal, from family and friends, and include letters from son Charles and sisters Ellen and Judith. Some letters are transactional in nature, such as correspondence from lawyers, real estate brokers and insurance brokers about financial assets. Some are invoices for routine purchases from vendors of coal, dairy products, and the pharmacy, for example. There are 94 letters/invoices with envelopes and 24 empty envelopes. One letter, addressed to a Jennie Clark in Lowell, MA, appears to be unrelated to Peabody.

In addition to the correspondence, there are several legal documents that include Peabody's will, deeds for properties in New York and in New Jersey, a founding deed of the Phillips Academy Department of Archaeology and an insurance certificate.
Conditions Governing Access This collection is open for research.
Language of Material English