Milton’s Dr. George W. Peavey (1839-1879)

By Muriel Bristol | December 20, 2020

George Washington Peavey was born in Rochester, NH, in December 1839, son of Thomas and Deborah A. (Sherbourne) Peavey.

Thomas Peavey, Jr., a farmer, aged forty-six years (b. NH), headed an Ossipee, NH, household at the time of the Eighth (1860) Federal Census. His household included Deborah Peavey, aged fifty years (b. NH), George W. Peavey, a student at Reed, aged twenty-one years (b. NH), Joseph A. Peavey, a farmer, aged fifteen years (b. NH), Mary E. Peavey, aged eleven years (b. NH), and Lydia A. Peavey, aged nine years (b. NH). Thomas Peavey, Jr., had real estate valued at $3,000 and personal estate valued at $2,400. His household appeared in the enumeration between those of Jonathan Ambrose, a farmer, aged sixty-five years (b. NH), and Benjamin F. Abbott, a blacksmith, aged fifty-two years (b. NH).

George Washington Peavey of Ossipee, NH, appeared as one of twenty-two first-course students at the Maine School of Medicine at Bowdoin College in 1860. His preceptor was Alvah Moulton, M.D. (Moulton was an Ossipee physician). Peavey subsequently attended Dartmouth College, where he received his medical degree with the Class of 1862.

George W. Peavey married (1st) in Ossipee, NH, August 15, 1860, Ann Eliza Thurston, both of Ossipee. He was a student, aged twenty years, and she was a domestic, aged nineteen years. Rev. Horace Wood performed the ceremony. She was born in Ossipee, NH, April 15, 1841, daughter of Isaac and Maria (Dodge) Thurston.

OSSIPEE, N.H., June 13, 1860. We take pleasure in recommending Greenleaf’s Series of Arithmetics as being the best with which we are acquainted for the use of Public Schools. H. WOOD, G.W. TEBBETTS, GEORGE W. PEAVEY, Superintending School Committee of Ossipee (Fisk, 1860). 

George W. and Ann E. (Thurston) Peavey had one child, Charles Thurston Peavey, who died in Tuftonborough, NH, in March 1863. Ann E. (Thurston) Peavey died in Tuftonborough, NH, June 7, 1863.

George W. Peavey of Tuftonborough, NH, who had been drafted, hired William Burns of Boston, MA, in June 1864, to occupy his place in the Sixth Regiment, NH Volunteer Infantry. Burns was a sailor, aged twenty-three years, who had hazel eyes, brown hair, and stood 5′ 5″ tall.

George W. Peavey married (2nd) in Enfield, NH, August 5, 1864, Arabella Mary Hayes, both of Tuftonborough, NH. He was a physician, aged twenty-five years, and she was aged eighteen years. Rev. Frank Haley, pastor of the Enfield Congregational Church, performed the ceremony. She was born in Tuftonborough, NH, November 8, 1845, daughter of James and Mary D. (Caverly) Hayes.

George W. Peavey appeared in a NH register of 1866 as one of fifteen Tuftonborough justices-of-the-peace.

George W. Peavey appeared as a Milton physician in the Milton business directories of 1867-68, 1868, and 1869-70. He appeared also as a Milton justice-of-the-peace. He was an incorporator of the Milton Classical Institute in July 1867.

George W Peavey, aged thirty-one years (b. NH), headed a Milton household at the time of the Ninth (1870) Federal Census. His household included Mary A. Peavey, keeping house, aged twenty-three years (b. NH), and Edwin D. Wiggin, a hostler, aged twenty-three years (b. NH). George W. Peavey had personal estate valued at $680. He shared a two-family residence with the household of Ira W. Duntley, a blacksmith, aged twenty-eight years (b. NH). Their residence was enumerated between the households of John E. Twombly, a retail grocer, aged thirty-four years (b. NH), and George I. Jordan, a shoe cutter, aged thirty-seven years (b. ME).

George W. Peavey appeared as a Milton physician in the Milton business directories of 1871, 1873, 1874, 1875, 1876, and 1877. He appeared also as a Milton justice-of-the-peace..

George W. Peavey of Milton divorced Mary A. [(Hayes)] Peavey of Somersworth, NH, in Strafford Superior Court, February 19, 1878. He alleged “extreme cruelty, adultery, and treatment such as to seriously injure health.” (Such hyperbolic accusations were a legal requirement). She married (2nd), circa 1885, Elphranzo E. Downs (c1839-1904), and died in Lynn, MA, November 25, 1891.

George W. Peavey married (3rd) in Great Falls, i.e., Somersworth, NH, August 6, 1878, Esther Annette “Nettie” Churchill, he of Rochester, NH, and she of Brookfield, NH. He was a doctor, aged thirty-nine years, and she was aged twenty-two years. Rev. P.W. Perry, pastor of the Green Street Free-Will Baptist Church, performed the ceremony. She was born in Brookfield, NH, December 22, 1854, daughter of Thomas L. “Lindsay” and Sarah A. (Stackpole) Churchill.

George W. Peavey, M.D., died in Somersworth, NH, September 15, 1879, aged thirty-nine years.

[Dartmouth College] Class of 1862. George Washington Peavey, b. Dec., 1839, Rochester, N.H. Physician, Tuftonboro, N.H.; Milton, N.H.; Great Falls, N.H., 1878-79. d. 15 Sept., 1879 (Dartmouth, 1900).

Annette E. (Churchill) Peavey married (2nd) in Boston, MA, July 9, 1884, Charles G. Hovey, who died in Boston, MA, November 3, 1896. She married (3rd) in Boston, MA, September 26, 1899, Caleb Saunders (who died in Lawrence, MA, December 20, 1917).

Annette E. (((Churchill) Peavey) Hovey) Saunders died in Lawrence, MA, January 10, 1911.

DEATHS. SAUNDERS. In Boston. Jan. 10, Annette E.. wife of Hon. Caleb Saunders of Lawrence. Funeral services at Grace church, Lawrence, Friday, at 2:30 p.m. (Boston Globe, January 12, 1911).


Find a Grave. (2011, October 6). Arabella M. Downs. Retrieved from

Find a Grave. (2013, January 20). George W. Peavy. Retrieved from

Find a Grave. (2020, February 14). Annette Churchill Saunders. Retrieved from

Fisk, Benjamin F. (1860). A Grammar of the Greek Language. Retrieved from

Author: Muriel Bristol

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