Peabody, Mass., is located 18 miles north of Boston and comprises part of the North Shore region of the state. It is accessible via Routes 1, 114 and 128, and Interstates 93 and 95. Peabody is bordered by the municipalities of Lynn, Lynnfield, Salem, Middleton and Danvers, and is within easy reach of the Atlantic coastline. For those looking to live near both the coast and a major city should consider Peabody apartments for rent.
Peabody is named after 19th century philanthropist George Peabody, who was born in the area in 1795. The enterprising businessman developed his wealth in Georgetown, D.C., and blossomed into an international merchant and financier in Baltimore. In 1837, he relocated to London, England, where he founded George Peabody & Co., a banking house that specialized in foreign exchange and American securities. Peabody turned to philanthropic endeavors in his later years and donated funds to establish the Peabody Institute Library on Main Street, as well as other libraries and schools across the nation.
Peabody's nickname is the "Tanner City," a reference to the industry responsible for much of its growth and development - leather. The traces of this part of the city's history are few and far between nowadays, but its high school sports teams are named the Tanners. The leather trade may no longer be booming, but the city has adapted. Retail, technology and healthcare are its main industries now, thanks to the Centennial Park industrial complex and the Northshore Mall.
The hub of the city is its quaint downtown area, centered on Peabody Square and the four main thoroughfares of Main, Lowell, Foster and Central Streets. Several of its buildings reflect architectural styles from the turn of the 20th century - for instance, the O'Shea Building located just off the square, which was designed and constructed by local tannery owner Thomas O'Shea in 1902. The mustard brick structure is known for its limestone trim and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.
Those looking for a more suburban experience should consider West Peabody, a middle class residential area just a short drive from downtown.
The city's public school system is made up of 10 schools. For those looking to go private, Covenant Christian Academy serves children in grades K-12, while Bishop Fenwick High School is another alternative for grades 9-12.
In terms of institutes of further education, Salem State College is only approximately a 10-minute drive away, as is the city of Beverly, which is home to Endicott College and the Montserrat College of Art.
One of Peabody's largest employers is Analogic Corporation, which is headquartered in the city and specializes in medical imaging, ultrasound and security technology. Other major employers include electronics distribution company Converge, Cardinal Health, Christian Book Distributors and marketing company Communication Ink.
According to City-Data.com's March 2012 cost of living index, living in Peabody costs more than the national average - it ranked at 134.7 on the index, compared to the U.S. average of 100. The median gross rent of apartments in Peabody is $1,127.
Because Peabody is about a half-hour drive from Boston, many residents head to the capital for concerts, culture and events. That said, there are several attractions in the Peabody area, including the Peabody Essex Museum. Despite its name, the museum is actually located in neighboring Salem, and showcases artifacts from around the globe.
Keen golfers are in luck, as the city owns and operates the 18-hole Meadow at Peabody Golf Course. The Salem Country Club, which hosted the U.S. Senior Open in 2001, is also located in Peabody.
The city-managed Brooksby Farm, a 275-acre working farm and conservation area, is another of Peabody's biggest attractions. In the summer months, visitors can pick apples, raspberries and strawberries at the orchards or go hiking on the property's many trails - the same trails that are perfect for skiing in the winter.
Fans of ice-skating, another popular winter pursuit, don't have to wait until the temperature drops thanks to the James McVann - Louis O'Keefe Memorial Rink, an indoor skating rink owned by the city.
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