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Julius Rosenwald, Optimist, Opposes the Dead Hand of Perpetual Endowments

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(Jewish Daily Bulletin)

“Being an optimist, I have confidence in the future,” Julius Rosenwald declared in a birthday message given to the Associated Press on the occasion of his sixty-sixth anniversary yesterday. “I believe that large gifts should not be restricted and that under no circumstances should funds be held in perpetuity. Having confidence in trustees, I am not opposed to endowments for colleges or other institutions which require more continuity of support, provided permission is given to use part of the principal from time to time as needs arise. This does not mean profligate spending.

“It is simply placing confidence in living trustees; it prevents control by the ‘dead hand'; it discourages the building up of bureaucratic groups of men, who tend to become overconservative and timid in investment and disbursement of trust funds. I have been gratified to read a recent statement of Mr. Rockefeller approving the principle that a trust fund be entirely expended within twenty-five years of the death of the donor. He, as well as I, seems to have confidence that future generations will meet their own needs wisely and generously,” Mr. Rosenwald stated.

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