There have been numerous marriages at Lawrence throughout its history. In honor of Valentine’s Day, this article looks at the marriage of Emma Peabody and William Harper that almost didn’t happen. Emma Peabody was the daughter of George Peabody, a businessman active in the Appleton community and a Lawrence trustee. He was the owner of the department store Pettibone-Peabody and lived in a house located where the Mudd Library is today. George was a widower whose one daughter, Emma, served as the keeper of the house and was active in the arts in both Appleton and Lawrence. Though she was only in her late twenties, in the early 1900s she was considered a spinster, and it was assumed that she would never marry and continue to live in her father’s house for the rest of her life. William Harper arrived at Lawrence in 1908 to serve as the new dean of the Conservatory. Music classes were held in Main Hall and Stephenson Hall of Science; there wasn’t a building designated as the home of the Conservatory. William met Emma, and they quickly fell in love and wanted to marry. Emma’s father forbade this: William was divorced, something that was considered quite scandalous in those days, and he was a musician. George did not think William was worthy of his daughter and did not believe William could support her. George learned he had inoperable stomach cancer in early 1909, and in September of that year, nearing death, he drew up a new will. He died a few days later on Sunday morning, September 12, 1909, a few hours after his sixtieth birthday. He was buried two days later at Riverside Cemetery. A week to the day after he died, Emma and William were married by Lawrence president Samuel Plantz, who was also a Methodist minister. A few days later, the contents of George Peabody’s new will were opened and read. The will included a modest income for Emma since George was determined William would not live in any luxury off the Peabody name. George wrote in the will that if Emma remained single, she would receive the bulk of the inheritance. If she married Harper, she would receive much less. Emma was saddened when she heard the news of the will, but given that she and William had a long and happy marriage, it seems that she knew she made the right decision. Emma’s health was always very frail, and William and she left Lawrence and moved to southern California in 1913. They lived there until William passed away in 1947. William’s body was brought back to Appleton and buried at Riverside Cemetery near his father-in-law. Before Emma died in 1954, her attorney sent a letter to Riverside Cemetery stating that Emma wanted to be buried between her father and husband. After her death, she was buried as she had requested. Both George and Emma contributed money for a building to house the Conservatory that was built in 1910. When the Music- Drama Center was built in 1959, a wing of the building was named in honor of Peabody while the music hall was named in honor of William, ensuring that Lawrence would continue to remember George, his daughter, and her husband.