"James W. Peckham was educated in the public schools of DeKalb county, Missouri, and followed farming in that State until 1876, when he came to Sumner county, Kansas, locating on Government land near the present town of South Haven. Here he engaged in farming, and during the years when they had crop failures he was engaged as a Government freighter, hauling supplies from the nearest railroad to the United States Indian agencies and the military posts, and on these trips he frequently experienced many incidents of frontier life. He sold his original homestead in 1886, and now owns several well improved farms, two of which are near South Haven. He retired from active business in 1907. He has done his work and succeeded in accumulating a comfortable fortune and is now enjoying life in peace and plenty. Mr. Peckham was united in marriage, May 1, 1881, to Miss Ella Cronkhite, daughter of Lansing and Sarah (Gundy) Cronkhite, of Warren county, Indiana. To this union were born three children, all of whom died in infancy. Mr. Peckham is a Democrat, but has never aspired to hold public office. However, he served on the city council of South Haven in 1909-10. He is a member of the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Haven Lodge No. 157, and both he and his wife are members of the Christian church."
4/19/1910 S Haven, Sumer Co, KS. The census recorded only James, 56, and Ella, 44, in the household. They had been married 28 years with 3 children, none surviving. James had his own income rather than an occupation.
4/24/1930 Same place. That year the census taker recorded James at 77, married first at 28, to Ella, 64, who married first at 15. They owned their residence which was valued at $1800 and had a radio.