George Peabody Google doodle honors philanthropist often called ‘Father of Modern Philanthropy’

Today’s Google doodle pays tribute to George Peabody, the philanthropist who is believed to have given nearly half of his $16 million fortune to good causes during his lifetime.

According to Google, Peabody is credited with being the Father of Modern Philanthropy and often focused his financial gifts on educational initiatives. Google chose today to celebrate Peabody because it was on March 16, 1867, that Peabody received the Congressional Gold Medal for giving $2 million 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,” writes Google on the Google Doodle blog. Google notes the $2 million gift Peabody donated in 1867 would be worth $30 million today.

The doodle leads to a search for “George Peabody philanthropist” and is being shared on Google’s US home page, along with a small selection of its international homepages. 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. Google says the artwork was the result of a Doodle team volunteer project at the school.

George Peabody Elementary School mural

George Peabody Google Doodle

Born in 1795 in Massachusetts, Peabody made his fortune in the dry goods business and international trade in London, where he would eventually settle. Peabody remained in the UK until his death in November 1869.

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