George Thorndike Angell

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George Thorndike Angell
George Thorndike Angell.jpg
Born (1823-06-05)June 5, 1823
Southbridge, Massachusetts
Died March 16, 1909(1909-03-16) (aged 85)
Boston, Massachusetts
Nationality American
Occupation Lawyer, criminologist, philanthropist
Known for Lifelong advocacy for the humane treatment of animals,
Detail of monument to George Thorndike Angell in the Financial District, Boston, Massachusetts

George Thorndike Angell (June 5, 1823 – March 16, 1909) was an American lawyer, philanthropist, and advocate for the humane treatment of animals.

He was born in Southbridge, Massachusetts, graduated from Dartmouth College in 1846, studied law at the Harvard Law School, and in 1851 was admitted to the bar in Boston, where he practiced for many years.

While attending horse races in 1866 he witnessed two horses being run to death. Motivated by this incident and inspired by the work of Henry Bergh in New York, his advocacy for the humane treatment of animals became a lifelong passion.[1]

In 1868 he founded and became president of the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, in the same year establishing and becoming editor of Our Dumb Animals, a journal for the promotion of organized effort in securing the humane treatment of animals. For many years he was active in the organization of humane societies in England and America. In 1882, the Rev. Thomas Timmins and he initiated the movement for the establishment of Bands of Mercy (for the promotion of humane treatment of animals), of which in 1908 there were more than 72,000 in active existence. In 1889 he founded and became president of the American Humane Education Society.

He became well known as an advocate of laws for the safeguarding of the public health and against adulteration of food.

After suffering from failing health for a long time, he died at his apartments at the Hotel Westminster in Boston at the age of 85.[1] He is buried at Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge/Watertown.


  1. ^ a b "GEORGE T. ANGELL DEAD: Known Here as 'the Friend of the Animals.'", The New York Times, 17 March 1909, p 9. [ProQuest Historical Newspapers, New York Times (1857-Current file), Document ID 101871551]