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George Peabody

George Peabody
Usage Conditions Apply
Artist
George Peter Alexander Healy, 15 Jul 1813 - 24 Jun 1894
Sitter
George Peabody, 18 Feb 1795 - 4 Nov 1869
Date
c. 1854
Type
Painting
Medium
Oil on canvas
Dimensions
158cm x 101.5cm (62 3/16" x 39 15/16"), Accurate
Topic
Printed Material\Document
Home Furnishings\Furniture\Desk
Personal Attribute\Facial Hair\Muttonchops
George Peabody: Male
George Peabody: Business and Finance\Financier
George Peabody: Business and Finance\Businessperson\Industrialist\Railroad
George Peabody: Society and Social Change\Philanthropist
George Peabody: Business and Finance\Businessperson\Merchant\Dry goods merchant
George Peabody: Congressional Gold Medal
Portrait
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Restrictions & Rights
CC0
Object number
NPG.68.26
Exhibition Label
Born Danvers (now Peabody), Massachusetts
While touring the South in 1866, the London-based American financier George Peabody grew troubled by the depressed conditions he witnessed. Convinced that education was key to the region’s postwar recovery, he formed a plan for encouraging Southern states to develop public school systems. With a pledge of $2.1 million, he established the Peabody Education Fund “to promote and encourage the intellectual, moral, and industrial education of the destitute children of the Southern States.” Although Peabody intended to benefit Black and white students equally, virtually all Southern schools were racially segregated, and funds disproportionately went to whites-only schools.
The American artist George Peter Alexander Healy painted this portrait in London, where Peabody spent over thirty years accumulating a fortune as a merchant and financier. Considered the founder of modern philanthropy, Peabody donated much of his wealth to U.S. libraries, museums, and universities that still bear his name.
Nacido en Danvers (hoy Peabody), Massachusetts
En un viaje por el sur en 1866, George Peabody, financiero estadounidense radicado en Londres, quedó perturbado por la depresión económica que vio. Convencido de que la educación era clave para la recuperación de la región tras la guerra, formuló un plan para estimular a los estados sureños a desarrollar sistemas escolares públicos. Prometiendo aportar $2.1 millones, creó el Fondo Educativo Peabody “para fomentar la educación intelectual, moral e industrial de los niños indigentes en los estados sureños”. Aunque quería beneficiar por igual a estudiantes blancos y negros, casi todas las escuelas sureñas estaban segregadas, y los fondos terminaron mayormente en las escuelas para blancos.
El estadounidense George Peter Alexander Healy pintó este retrato en Londres, donde Peabody pasó más de 30 años haciendo fortuna en el comercio y las finanzas. Considerado el fundador de la filantropía moderna, Peabody donó mucho de su capital a bibliotecas, museos y universidades de EE.UU. que aún llevan su nombre.
Provenance
(Childs Gallery, Inc., Boston); purchased 1968 NPG.
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
Exhibition
2022 Rehang of Out of Many: Portraits from 1600 to 1900
On View
NPG, East Gallery 123
Exhibition
Reconstruction Gallery
On View
NPG, East Gallery 123