Edward Peacock (1831-1915), antiquary and historian, was born at Hemsworth in Yorkshire. From an early age he showed a talent for writing, contributing short articles to The Zoologist and began to write in the local newspaper The Stamford Mercury, where his short articles and letters appeared regularly for over fifty years. By 1850 he was writing to the national journal Notes and Queries, where his antiquarian interests came to the fore. In 1857, at the age of only twenty-five, he was elected a fellow of the Society of Antiquarians. He was also an active member of the Archaeological Institute, the Surtees Society, the Society of Antiquaries of Normandy, the Anthropological Institute, English Dialect Society, Early English Text Society and the New England Historical and Genealogical Society. For the rest of his life he contributed numerous articles on a broad range of subjects to the various magazines of his societies as well as corresponding with contemporaries who shared his interests in England, America, France, Germany, Holland and Scandinavia. He lived for most of his life at his family home of Bottesford Manor in Lincolnshire, but financial difficulties forced him to sell up in 1895 and for the last twenty years he lived in Kirton in Lindsey where he died on 31 March 1915.
Peacock's interest in history, although broad, was mainly focused on the period of the English Civil War (1642-1649), with a great biographical work, dealing with all the known notable combatants, never being completed. In his published editions of historical documents he displayed a fondness for extensive footnotes containing parallel examples and illustrative matter. Born a year before the death of William Fowler of Winterton, whose life overlapped that of Stukeley by four years, and dying five years after the establishment of the Lincoln Record Society, Peacock provides an interesting bridge between the dilettante antiquarian of the early nineteenth century and the scientific historian of the twentieth.
In 1853 Edward Peacock married Lucy, daughter of John S. Wetherell of New York, a captain in the U.S. Merchant Service. They had a large family of which Adrian Peacock became a distinguished botanist, Julian Peacock held a post at the John Rylands Library in Manchester, Mabel Peacock was author of prose and verse in dialect and Florence Peacock wrote a volume of poems and some historical essays.