March 16, 2018
Celebrating George Peabody
Today we celebrate George Peabody, a man widely considered “the father of modern philanthropy.”
Born in 1795 to a poor family in Massachusetts, Peabody had only a few years’ worth of education before opening a local general store. His experience in the dry goods business expanded and led to international trade in London, where he would eventually work as a banker and settle in 1837. In that role, Peabody accumulated great wealth and his involvement in both the American and English business and social scenes provided him widespread recognition.
During his life, Peabody immersed himself in public causes, with a particular focus on educational initiatives. In fact, it was on this day in 1867 that he was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal after donating $2,000,000 (upwards of $30,000,000 today!) for the advancement of education, an act of generosity made all the more impressive by the fact that he left school at the age of 11. It’s believed that Peabody gifted over $8,000,000 in the course of his lifetime, about half of his $16,000,000 fortune.
Fun fact: Today's Doodle art is the result of a Doodle team volunteer mural project at George Peabody Elementary School in San Francisco, California! The mural currently resides in the student cafeteria. Check out a timelapse of the process below!
The final mural
Unveiling the Doodle at George Peabody Elementary School!
Early concepts of the mural/Doodle below