Behind the Doodle: Celebrating George Peabody

  • Published on:  3/15/2018
  • Today we celebrate George Peabody, a father of modern philanthropy and the namesake of the prestigious Peabody Award. 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. This is a behind-the-scenes look the entire painting process.

    More on George Peabody:

    Born into a lineage of businessmen in 1852, Peabody’s private education was cut short when the Civil War impoverished his family. He went to New York to apprentice at a general store and took his education into his own hands, spending countless hours at Y.M.C.A. Library, which he called his “alma mater.” Not long after, he secured his future when he became a partner in a successful investment firm, marking the beginning of a long and lucrative career.

    During his life, Peabody immersed himself in social and political activism, with special focus on the promotion of education in the South. In fact, it was on this day in 1867 that he was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal after donating $2,000,000 (roughly $36,000,000 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.