William Blaney, a master painter, was born in Lynn on 17 December 1834 to Philip and Mary Blaney. Philip was also a painter, and William started in the business when he was still a boy. He moved to Peabody and established himself there as a painter as well as a leader in town affairs, although he never held an official position.
One night, at the age of seventy-nine, Blaney was walking through Peabody by the Soldiers’ Monument when he was struck by a car. The driver of the car, H.J. Pushard, took Blaney to the hospital where they thought he had sustained only minor injuries. In fact, his skull had been fractured, and he died the following afternoon, 15 November 1913.