His name when he was born was Johann Jacob Bach.
He was either born in Erfurt, Germany or in Konigsberg, Prussia. His parents were Johann Nicolaus Bach and Anna Margarethe Happig. They had moved from Erfurt, sometime after they got married (around 1702 or later), to Konigsberg. But it is not known if Johann Jacob was born before or after the move.
It is believed that his father died around 1738, and the following year, he went to visit his cousins, who lived in Thuringia, Germany
In 1740, he sailed to America with his cousins, Johann Heinrich Bach (FAG #132887117) and his younger brother Johann Wilhelm Bach (FAG #167726001). All three men first settled in Culpeper County, Virginia.
Copies of the passenger lists showing the names of these three men can be found here: passenger lists
After he arrived in America, he changed his name to a simpler spelling, as most immigrants did. His new name was Jacob Back. But it was pronounced as Jacob Beck. For some reason, he was later known as Jacob Peck. It is suspected that, due to his heavy German accent, people were not sure how he was spelling his last name, and so the spelling evolved, over the years.
He got married, around 1750, but the name of his wife is not known. Some researchers indicate that she was Catherina Ring (born about 1730). However, this needs to be verified.
Around 1772, they, along with his cousin Johann Wilhelm Bach (who was then known as John William Back) migrated to southwestern Virginia. Jacob bought 120 acres of land from Isaac Romans. It was located along the south side of the Middle Fork of the Holston River, in Washington County (later became Smyth County, in 1832). His cousin bought some land about 30 miles away.
Jacob was seen in the tax lists in Washington County, from 1782 until 1789.
Old court records show that at least two lawsuits were filed against him in 1784: James Graham sued him on 4-19-1784; and Robert Armstrong sued him on 11-27-1784. The reasons for these court actions are not known.
His wife died, sometime before 1789, which was when he sold his land. He probably died in late 1789 or 1790.
He and his wife had several children, and all of them had the last name of Peck. However, only the name of his son Jacob Jr. has been confirmed so far. But it is believed that he also had a son named John, because a man named John Peck signed Jacob Peck Jr.'s marriage record in 1795.