Story of Thomas Coram

Thomas Coram was a philanthropist whose greatest achievement, the Foundling Hospital, was just one of many projects he pursued throughout his life.

William Hogarth portrait of Thomas CoramHe was neither wealthy nor famous but his commitment to his causes persuaded others to support him. He was radical in his thought and methods. He triumphed over the prejudices of a society which tolerated child poverty and destitution as a necessary evil, argued for the education of girls, and spoke up for native Americans and poor sailors left stranded in London.

Along the way, he invented new forms of charity and fundraising, incidentally making Handel’s Messiah famous, and helping Hogarth reinvent portrait painting.

Amongst the supporters, friends and governors of the Hospital were famous artists, writers and musicians of the time, including the composer George Frideric Handel, the artist William Hogarth and the author Charles Dickens

More about Thomas Coram

Thomas Coram led a rich and fascinating life. Browse our website to discover more of his story. 


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