We are delighted so many of you enjoyed our first part of the Peabody’s Park series. This week, we will delve into the history of Marrs and Corbeil Parks. Much like our First Lady Friday series, we will be popping back over the course of this year to cover all of Peabody’s public parks and their history.

Marrs Park, Lynn Item, June 27, 1988. Photographer: Linda Spillane.
Nicole Geggatt, 7 Years Old, Peabody rides on a swing at Marrs Park.

Marrs Park

Dr. Francis J. Marrs, image from his time on the 1924 School Committee

Dr. Francis J. Marrs was born in Peabody in 1896 to Joan and John Marrs. He had 4 brothers and 2 sisters. He served in World War I as a medic.

He graduated from Peabody High School and Tufts Dental School. He was the dentist for the school district and was on the Peabody School Committee from 1920 to 1925. He was part of the effort to construct Leo J. Buckley Stadium.

He lived at 47 Pierpoint Street and died on April 7, 1931 after complications following a surgery at J.B. Thomas Hospital. In August 1934, it was decided that a new park in “Crow Village” would be dedicated to him for his service to the community. Marrs Park is located at the corner of Sutton and Home Streets. Today, it has a basketball court, pickleball court and a softball field.

Corbeil Park

Fernand Corbeil, The Peabody Times, April 2, 1953

Fernand C. Corbeil was born on April 8, 1908, in Biddeford, Maine, but spent most of his life in Peabody, Massachusetts. He married Florence Roy in 1930, and they had 3 sons, Fernand Jr., Richard and Ralph.

Corbeil opened Gardner Park Pharmacy in 1930, at 44 Margin Street. Gardner Park Pharmacy eventually became Corbeil Pharmacy. He retired in 1972. He was chairman of the Parks Commission from 1949 until his death in 1977. He started the summer basketball program at Peabody’s parks in 1956. He was a member of the Peabody Chamber of Commerce and the Massachusetts Pharmaceutical Association.

Corbeil Park was named for him not long after his death on January 16, 1977. Corbeil Park is located along Hoover Terrace in West Peabody. Today, it has tennis courts, pickleball courts and a baseball field.

The Peabody Times, March 17, 1956, the Brown School Girls’ Basketball Team with Fernand Corbeil

References –

Obituary, Dr. Francis J. Marrs, The Boston Globe and The Boston Herald, April 1931.

“Playfield will be named for Dr. Marrs,” The Boston Herald, August 10, 1934.

“Summer Basketball Puts Peabody in Contention,” The Boston Herald, July 24, 1960.

Obituary, Fernand C. Corbeil, The Boston Globe, January 17, 1977.