Google celebrates philanthropist George Peabody with a Doodle

Joanna Estrada
March 17, 2018

You've probably already noticed today's delightful Google Doodle, but what's the story behind its subject, George Peabody? Known as the father of modern philanthropy, Peabody donated more than $8 million to public causes that transformed housing and educational services in cities around the US and in the United Kingdom. Today is the anniversary of his reception of the Congressional Gold Medal in 1867 for charitable work.

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 global trade in London, where he would eventually work as a banker and settle in 1837. He then became a banker and in that role became very wealthy and his experience in American and English business made him well known.

During his life, Peabody immersed himself in social and political activism, with special focus on the promotion of education in the South.

Today's Google doodle pays tribute to George Peabody, the philanthropist who is believed to have given almost half of his $16 million fortune to good causes during his lifetime. The image is not only a Google doodle but is also featured as a mural on the cafeteria wall at George Peabody Elementary School in San Francisco. Check out a timelapse of the process below!

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