Biography of Preston E. Peckham

Well known in his native city, Jamestown, for the last twenty-five years as an able and successful business man, Mr. Peckham has also been prominently active in civic affairs and at different times has been honored by his fellow-citizens by election to important local offices. For the last five years he has been town clerk of Jamestown, in which capacity he has proven himself a very capable, efficient and conscientious public official. He also takes an active part in other phases of the community’s life and ranks as one of the representative, public-spirited and popular citizens of Jamestown.

Preston E. Peckham was born in Jamestown, May 28, 1884, a son of the late Alvin Herbert and Lizzie (Flanders) Peckham. His father, who was born at Middletown, was for many years successfully engaged in the general teaming business as a contractor and also was for several years president of the Jamestown & Newport Ferry Company. He, too, was active in civic affairs and for several years served as a member of the Jamestown Town Council. Mr. Peckham’s mother was a native of Martha’s Vineyard. Educated in the public schools of Jamestown and Newport, Mr. Peckham also took a course at the Newport Business College. Having completed his education, he entered, in 1905, business and for the next eleven years and until 1916 was a successful dealer in horses. At the end of this period he followed in the footsteps of his father and became a teaming contractor, engaging in this business for himself and under his own name. He was successful in it and continued until 1925, when he was elected town clerk of Jamestown, a position he has continued to occupy very effectively ever since then. At one time he also served for four years as a member of the Jamestown Town Council and he is also an auctioneer for the town of Jamestown. He was a member of the board of directors of the Jamestown & Newport Ferry Company for two years and serves as a director and the secretary of the Conanicut Land Improvement Association. In politics, he is a supporter of the Republican party, while his religious affiliations are with the Protestant Episcopal Church. He finds his recreation chiefly in horseback riding.

Mr. Peckham married, in 1905, Katharine A. Donahue, a native of Newport. Mr. and Mrs. Peckham are the parents of three children: Marion Preston, Helen Margaret and Alvin Herbert Peckham.

Source: Carroll, Charles. Rhode Island: Three Centuries of Democracy, vol 3 of 4. New York: Lewis historical Pub. Co., 1932.

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