elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,
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Edwin D. Peacock (January 2, 1910 – August 23, 1989)

Lived: Greenwood Plantation, GA 84, Thomasville, GA 31792, USA
The Book Basement, 9 College Way, Charleston
Buried: Laurel Hill Cemetery, Thomasville, Thomas County, Georgia, USA

Edwin Tralona Davis married Martha Tallulah Jones, daughter of Thomas Jones and his wife Lavinia Young. They had two daughters, Martha Davis (b. 28 Feb. 1867), who married Edmund Dutcher on 28 Aug. 1902, and Marion Davis (b. 26 Sep 1873), who married J. W. Peacock on 12 Sep. 1893, 8 children, one of whom was Edwin Peacock.
Address: GA 84, Thomasville, GA 31792, USA (30.85423, -84.01696)
Type: Private Property
National Register of Historic Places: 76000650, 1976
Place
Greenwood Plantation is a plantation in the Red Hills Region of southern Georgia, just west of Thomasville. The original Greek Revival mansion on the property was designed by British architect John Wind and built about 1838 for Thomas and Lavinia Jones. The house was completed in 1844, and the Jones family occupied the plantation until it was sold in 1889 to S.R. Van Duzer of New York. Van Duzer later sold the home Col. Oliver Hazard Payne, who bequeathed the home in 1916 to his nephew, the millionaire and horse racing enthusiast Payne Whitney. After Payne's death, Greenwood was inherited in 1944 by his son Jock Whitney, who was responsible for arranging the financing for the movie version of “Gone with the Wind,” which premiered in Atlanta in December 1939, with Jock Whitney in attendance. The plantation reportedly served as "a model of southern elegance for the movie." In 1899, Payne engaged noted architect Stanford White of the firm McKim, Mead & White to add two small, symmetric side wings and additional living and kitchen space in the rear of the main house. In 1942, Jock married Betsey Cushing, former wife of James Roosevelt. The Whitneys, who also owned a number of other homes in New York and England, regularly visited Greenwood as their winter home, often bringing their thoroughbred race horses with them. Jock served as the American ambassador to the Court of St. James's from 1957 to 1961 under President Dwight Eisenhower, who while a visitor at Greenwood enjoyed quail and turkey hunting. Many other famous friends of the Whitneys stayed at Greenwood over the years, including the Duke and Duchess of Windsor and Fred Astaire. In February 1964, shortly after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, his widow Jackie spent several weeks at the plantation as a guest of the Whitneys, who provided her a much-needed refuge from media attention. Mrs. Kennedy's visit again in 1967 provided some fodder for the tabloids of the day as Lord Harlech, the ambassador to the US from the Court of St. James's, was also a guest during her stay. The main house was renovated and restored in 1965, and redecorated by society decorator Sister Parish in 1993; but just when the redecoration had been completed, a fire broke out, gutting the interior but leaving the external walls intact. Jock died in 1982, and his widow in 1998; upon her death, she left the plantation to the family's Greentree Foundation, who maintained the property according to a conservation plan created by her and expert consultants. In 2013, the foundation offered the plantation for sale. The plantation includes 5,200 acres of forest used for quail hunting with 1,000 acres of old-growth longleaf pines, some up to 500 years old.
Life
Who: Edwin D. “Eager Wings” Peacock (January 2, 1910 – August 23, 1989) and John Asbury Zeigler, Jr (February 5, 1912 – October 2, 2015)
Edwin Peacock and John Zeigler, Jr. were together for 50 years. Edwin was born in Thomasville, Georgia in 1910; John was born in Manning, South Carolina two years later. “Edwin and John: A Personal History of the American South” is a Southern love story set against the backdrop of WWII and the post-war South, where they opened a bookshop in what was then the small town of Charleston. How these two men forged a relationship that endured the conflicts of war and emotion, openly shared their lives, and dealt with tragedy and death is Edwin and John's story. This is also a tale of two boys growing up gay in the South during an era in which "gay" was simply an ordinary word and discussion of any type of sexuality was, at the very least, impolite. Edwin was raised in a large family. His father was a druggist, and his mother, born on her family's ante-bellum Greenwood Plantation, had moved to Thomasville at the turn of the century. While Edwin had few sexual experiences growing up, he knew his attractions were to men. He enjoyed the friendship of women, telling stories and pulling harmless pranks. His greatest childhood love, though, was botany. After graduating from high school and a couple of years working in his father's drugstore, the twenty-something Edwin moved to Columbus, Georgia for work in the Civilian Conservation Corps. It was there he met Carson Smith, an adolescent pianist who had suffered from rheumatic fever. The two formed a lifelong friendship as Edwin encouraged her writing interest. Carson would later fictionalize Edwin as the homosexual deaf-mute, John Singer, in her first novel, “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter.” John's family moved from town to town before settling in Florence, South Carolina when he was five years old. His father also had been a druggist but soon began a newspaper, in which he editorialized against the Klan and venal Southern politicians. Although less outgoing than Edwin, John found more opportunities for same-sex relationships, including a lad who became his lifelong friend. John moved to Charleston to enter The Citadel in 1928, where he fell in love with poetry and with his second-year roommate. Edwin died in 1989 and is buried alongside his parents at Laurel Hill Cemetery, Thomasville. John died in 2015 and his body was donated to medical science, to The Medical University of South Carolina.



Queer Places, Vol. 1 edited by Elisa Rolle
ISBN-13: 978-1532901904
ISBN-10: 1532901909
Release Date: July 24, 2016
CreateSpace Store: https://www.createspace.com/6228297
Amazon (print): http://www.amazon.com/dp/1532901909/?tag=elimyrevandra-20
Amazon (kindle): http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01IZ1BU9K/?tag=elimyrevandra-20

The ground floor of 9 College Way, owned by relatives of John Zeigler, housed The Book Basement, the leading independent bookstore in the city of Charleston for decades; it was where most College of Charleston library books were purchased. It was owned and run by Edwin Peacock (1910-1989) and John Zeigler, (born 1912) one of the city’s most prominent gay couples. Not only was it a meeting place for various civil rights groups, but gay people visiting and passing through Charleston, including the likes of children’s author Maurice Sendak and Harlem Renaissance poet and writer Langston Hughes, stopped here and became friends of the owners. Edwin Peacock introduced bisexual southern writer Carson Smith (1917-1967) to her eventual husband Reeves McCullers. Carson McCullers is remembered today for “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter,” “The Member of the Wedding” and other works. Peacock was a good friend to her for her entire life, and some believe that Peacock, hard of hearing and universally pleasant to all, may have been an inspiration for John Singer, the central mute character in “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter.” Peacock and Zeigler opened their bookstore on Carson’s birthday in 1946 and she was a frequent guest here. This might be the only site in Charleston mentioning a gay couple. Although their names are linked only as business partners, their names are together on the plaque in front of the building. Their relationship is detailed in Zeigler’s’ cycle of memorial poems, “The Edwin Poems” and in his autobiography, “Edwin and John: A Personal History of the American South.” A drawing of the building by gay artist Prentiss Taylor was often used on postcards advertising events at the store. Of further gay interest is the fact that John Zeigler appears renamed as “Nicky” in the book “Jeb and Dash: A Gay Life, 1918-1945” published from the diaries of Carter Bealer, edited by his niece Ina Russell.



Queer Places, Vol. 1 edited by Elisa Rolle
ISBN-13: 978-1532901904
ISBN-10: 1532901909
Release Date: July 24, 2016
CreateSpace Store: https://www.createspace.com/6228297
Amazon (print): http://www.amazon.com/dp/1532901909/?tag=elimyrevandra-20
Amazon (kindle): http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01IZ1BU9K/?tag=elimyrevandra-20

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