Pioneer Fund


The following is a copy of the original "Certificate of Incorporation" of the Pioneer Fund. An archival copy of this certificate can be obtained from Harry Laughlin Papers, Folder labeled, "Pioneer Foundation," North East Missouri State University, Kirskville, MO.

In a memo from the Pioneer Fund dated 15 November 1989 to University of Delaware President, Trabant, we read: "The Pioneer charter was drafted in 1937 by Henry R. Guild of the respected Boston law firm of Herrick, Smith, Donald, Farley & Ketchum. The original charter used the phrase "human race" and the phrase "race betterment" in the same sentence. Mr. Guild informed the Fund that his understanding was that these terms were synonymous, and both referred to the human race. To avoid charges that the words had some other and sinister meaning, the present board of trustees amended the charter in 1985 and inserted the word "human" before the phrase "race betterment" in the second part of the sentence, even though it was redundant.

At the same time the word "white" was eliminated from the precatory provisions of the charter authorizing scholarships, in order to avoid more charges. In any case, the charter provision is moot, since no scholarships have ever been given under the provision, before or after the amendment€."

It should be noted that one of the first proposals for a Pioneer Funded study was submitted to the Board of Trustees of the Pioneer Fund on June 1, 1937. The "Proposed Plans for a Study of the Family Life of Army Aviators." The proposal reads as follows:

Proposed Plans for a Study of the Family Life of Army Aviators


My [John C. Flanagan] understanding is that the fundamental purpose for which the Pioneer fund was created is the improvement of the human race. The general method chosen to further this end is to secure an increase in the birth rate among superior groups. The specific group which was selected for preliminary investigation of suitable methods of increasing the birth rate was the United States Army Air Corps [African Americans were barred from the Army Air Corp until World War II].

The data sheet which was intended to gather information for this project, asked the Junior officers and their wives for their "Race Descent (Name the four principal racial stocks with portion or approximate portions of blood from each)."





Pursuant to the Membership Corporations Law

WE, THE UNDERSIGNED, for the purpose of forming a membership corporation pursuant to the Membership Corporations Law or the State or New York, hereby certify:

1. The name of the proposed corporation is THE PIONEER FUND, INC.

2. The purposes for which it is to be formed are:

To acquire money, securities, or other property, real or personal, by gift, legacy, or otherwise, including the right to receive the income or principal of any property, legacy or devise given by will or otherwise in trust to pay the principal or income to this Corporation; and to hold, invest, use, and dispose of the principal and income of the same for any one or more of the following charitable purposes:

A. To provide or aid in providing for the education of children or parents deemed to have such qualities and traits of character as to make such parents of unusual value as citizens, and, in the case of children or such parents whose means are inadequate therefor, to provide financial aid for the support, training, and start in life of such children.

The children selected for such aid shall be children of parents who are citizens of the United States, and in selecting such children, unless the directors deem it inadvisable, consideration shall be especially given to children who are deemed to be descended predominantly from white persons who settled in the original thirteen states prior to the adoption of the Constitution of the united states and/or from related stocks, or to classes of children the majority of whom are deemed to be so descended.

Subject to the requirement that the corporation shall be administered for strictly charitable objects, and in so far as it may be found practicable so to do, the foregoing purposes shall be carried out in such manner as to give assurance to parents of the character described that their children shall not lack an adequate education or start in life and thus to encourage an increase in the number at children or such parents, and in so far as the qualities and traits of such parents are inherited., to aid in improving the character of the people of the United States.

B. To conduct or aid in conducting study and research into the problems of heredity and eugenics in the human race generally and such study and such research in respect to animals and plants as may throw light upon heredity in man, and to conduct or aid in conducting research and study into the problems of race betterment with special reference to the people of the United States, and for the advance of knowledge and the dissemination of information with respect to any studies so made or in general with respect to heredity and eugenics.

The corporation is not organized for pecuniary profit and shall not engage in any activities for pecuniary profit, and no officer director, of member, or employee of the corporation stall receive any pecuniary profit from the operations thereof except reasonable compensation for services in effecting or carrying out one or more or its activities or as a proper beneficiary of its strictly charitable purposes. Any and all property acquired by the corporation shall be held, used, and disposed of for charitable purposes only and the above stated specific purpose shall be interpreted in a manner consistent with this intention.

3. Its operations are to be conducted principally in the territory comprising the continental United States, including the District of Columbia.

4. Its office is to be located in the city, County and State of Now York.

5. The number of its directors shall be not less than 3 nor more than 9.

6. The names and residences of the directors until the first annual meeting are:


Wickliffe Preston Draper 322 East 57th Street,
New York City, N.Y.

Harry H. Laughlin Cold Spring Harbor,
Long Island, N.Y.

Malcolm Donald 638 Blue Hill Avenue
Milton, Mass.

Frederick Henry Osborn Garrison-on-Hudson
New York.

7. All of the subscribers to this certificate are of full age; at least two-thirds of them are citizens of the United States; at least one of them is a resident of the State of New York. Of the persons named as directors, at least one is a citizen of the United States and a resident of the State of New York.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, we have made, subscribed, and acknowledged this certificate as of this 27th day of February, 1937.

Wickliffe Preston Draper

Harry H. Laughlin

Malcolm Donald

Frederick Henry Osborn

Vincent K. Smalley

(Acknowledgments omitted)

 From the ISAR Archives Files. Posted Feb. 1, 1998