Main Entry: eu·gen·ics


Pronunciation: yu-'je-niks


Function: noun plural but singular or plural in construction


Meaning: a science that deals with the improvement (as by control of human mating) of hereditary qualities of a race or breed




   The purpose of this timeline is to illustrate how warped human thinking can become and where it can lead. It addresses how life is valued by those in power and how “science can be manipulated to achieve an end.





Alfred Dreyfus is born. In 1898, he will be forced to undergo a show trial in France for espionage, largely because he is Jewish.



Dred Scott decision "Negroes are so inferior that they have no rights which a white man is bound to respect."



Darwin's Origin of Species. General Theory of Evolution defended by Thomas Henry Huxley, "Darwin's bulldog".



Franco-Prussian War. The participants saw it as a race war. (George Mosse, Towards the Final Solution, p. 90)



The German physiologist Rudolf Virchow conducted a study of 6.7 million children in Germany, comparing Jewish and Christian children across a range of physical characteristics. No differences were found. However, the findings from the study produced no cultural impact. (George Mosse, Towards the Final Solution, p. 90-92). Virchow is essentially the last major voice in Germany arguing against the idea that there are "races" within mankind.



Darwin's Descent of Man. It's main thesis: man developed from a lower life form.



Francis Galton, Darwin's cousin, coins the word "eugenics". His early aim was to selectively marry off the population so that poor heredity would be eliminated. Galton begins popularizing his ideas.



Hans Dreisch split a fertilized sea urchin egg which was at the two-cell division stage by hand. Each cell subsequently developed into two small but identical sea urchin larva. His research was carried on by Hans Spemann in Germany and Ross Harrison in the US.



Francis Galton endows a chair of eugenics at the University of London. (Bernard Schreiber, The Men Behind Hitler, A German Warning to the World, 1971, p. 15). The Journal for Racial and Social Biology, founded in Germany in this year, will follow Francis Galton's work in England (Eugenics Education Society) very closely. (Mosse, p. 75).



The US state of Indiana passes the world's first mandatory sterilization law. (John David Smith, "Minds Made Feeble", p. 136-137)



Eugenics journals are common throughout Europe. (Mosse, p 75)



American sociologist Henry Herbert Goddard, director of the Training School for Feeble-Minded Boys and Girls in Vineland NJ, publishes his account of the Kallikaks. Deborah Kallikak was considered feeble-minded. Her family tree was traced back six generations and feeble-mindedness was purportedly found in every generation. Elizabeth Kite, an assistant of Goddard who had no formal training, did most of the research. The work demonstrated that feeble-mindedness and a propensity towards crime was inherited. Scientists loved the work, a Broadway show based on the book was considered. (Smith, Minds Made Feeble, p. 5). Years later, the data was found to have been fabricated by Kite and Goddard.



Goddard's book Feeblemindedness: Its Causes and Consequences was the complete study of the 300 families of the Kallikak line. Stories on the Jukes and Nams of New York, the Tribe of Ishmael in Indiana, the Hill Folk of Ohio and the Dacks of Pennsylvania were also published about this time, however the Kallikak study was by far the most influential. All of the above-mentioned works were carried out by American sociologists.


The Kallikak study was published in Germany the same year. (Smith p. 161)



First World War. Most historians consider this war to be a direct result of the Franco-Prussian war.



Margaret Sanger opens her first birth control clinic.



Goddard and the new IQ tests determined that the average immigrant had a "moron-grade" intelligence level. (Smith, p. 6) The Intelligence Quotient was seen as immutable, fixed in the genes. (Donald K. Pickens, "Eugenics and the Progressives", p. 151)


Margaret Sanger founds the Birth Control League, and it's magazine The Birth Control Review. She edits this magazine until 1938. It promotes Sanger's idea "More children from the fit, less from the unfit".



The Release of Unworthy Life, That It Might Be Destroyed by the German lawyer Karl Binding and the physician Alfred Hoch. The book was not avowedly racist, but was definitely utilitarian. It asserted that non-useful people had to die so others could use scarce resources to live.


Euthanasia was based on a common respect for "everyone's will to live". Note the correspondence to resource preservation and overpopulation arguments. (Mosse, p. 216)



The Birth Control League, founded by Sanger in 1917, changes its name to the American Birth Control League. Lothrop Stoddard is on the board of directors. (Elasah Drogin, Margaret Sanger: Father of Modern Society, p. 13) In this year, Sanger wrote, "I think you must agree ... that the campaign for birth control is not merely of eugenic value, but is practically identical with the final aims of eugenics... Birth control propaganda is thus the entering wedge for the eugenic educator." (Margaret Sanger, "The Eugenic Value of Birth Control Propaganda.", Birth Control Review, October 1921, p. 5)



Lothrop Stoddard publishes The Revolt Against Civilization. It asserts that uncontrolled reproduction among defective families would bring the "twilight of the American mind" and the "dusk of mankind". (Smith, p.3)



Margaret Sanger publishes Pivot of Civilization. It advocates birth control and IQ testing, mandatory for the lower classes. Philanthropy is seen as a positive danger to society, since it allows the lower classes to propagate. Sanger will assert that up to 70% of the population had an intellect of less than a 15-year old (David Kennedy, Birth Control in America, the Career of Margaret Sanger, p. 116) She will also promote the idea of parenthood licenses - no one being permitted to have a child unless they first obtain a government-approved parenthood permit.


She is a strong advocate and practitioner of free love, and considers marriage both an abomination and an assault on human liberty. She supports compulsory education and restriction on child labor, not because it is good for the children, but because it would prove to be a burden to the poor and force them to restrict family size.



The Immigration Restriction Act comes into effect. This act won't be removed until 1965. It is passed largely due to the supporting testimony of the Eugenics Records Office, Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island. (Smith, p. 3)


The US state of Virginia passes the Racial Integrity Act, which forbids miscegany (sexual relations between whites and blacks). This law will become the model for the German Nuremburg laws. It is itself modelled on a sterilization act developed by Harry Laughlin. The law was written by W.A. Plecker; a eugenicist and the registrar for vital statistics for Virginia, he also worked closely with the Eugenics Record Office, and belonged to several eugenic organizations. (Smith, p. 154-156).


The Rockefeller Foundation begins funding Margaret Sanger.



U.S. Supreme Court upholds the validity of mandatory sterilization in Buck v. Bell. During the Nuremburg trials, a German doctor will cite Buck vs. Bell as the precedent for Nazi race hygiene and sterilization programs. (Smith p. 156)



The Lambeth Conference in England approves, for the first time, the use of contraceptives, albeit only within marriage and only for grave reasons. At least one noted eugenicist, the Rev. Dr. D. S. Bailey, was a participant in this conference.



Aldous Huxley publishes Brave New World. It explicitly modelled a society created through the Marquis de Sade's version of the French Revolution, in which the bodies of everyone were the common property of all, and minds were purged of all the inhibitions which society had established. In this work, he predicts that totalitarianism will take the form of government control in exchange for social stability. Totalitarian governments must make their subjects love their servitude, and this is best undertaken by allowing hedonism. He argues that doing nothing, and the silence which it entails, are the best weapons of propaganda. According to Huxley, in order for totalitarianism to take hold, four principles must be present:


  • Greatly improved techniques of suggestion. Huxley proposed drugs such as scopolamine, and infant conditioning, but he wrote before the effects of television were well-understood.


  • A fully developed science of human differences, so that people are placed correctly in the social hierarchy, thus avoiding the dangerous thoughts which people uncomfortable with their social situation feel.


  • Mental vacations from society through drugs. Again, the effect of the electronic drug television, was unforeseen.


  • Eugenics, in order to standardize the human product. (Huxley, Perennial Classic, 1946, vii-xiii)



January 30: Hitler is appointed Chancellor of Germany by Hindenburg.


The April issue of "The Birth Control Review" is devoted entirely to eugenic sterilization, with a feature article by Dr. Ernst Rudin, the director of Germany's Eugenics institute. (Schreiber, p. 35).


July 14: Hereditary Health Law created, based on the Laughlin model. Germany also sets up the first eugenics courts. Within a year 56,000 people would be sterilized. This move was roundly applauded by American eugenicists. (Smith p 156).


November: The Kallikak study is republished in Germany.


Harry Laughlin puts the number of eugenic sterilizations performed in the US at 15,000 through December 1931. Hans Spemann, the German developer of chimeric animals, comes to the US to deliver the Silliman invitational lecture at Yale.



The German constitution of 1871 forbad abortion, the article which outlawed it was not changed until this year, when the Hamburg courts declare a "racial emergency". Abortion is permitted in Germany for the first time since the German state came into being. Neglect of mentally and physically handicapped patients is encouraged. (Robert Jay Lifton, The Nazi Doctors, p. 62)



The Nuremburg laws are passed. An estimated 500,000 eugenic abortions have been performed in Germany.



The Nazis award Harry Laughlin an honorary degree from Hiedelburg University as part of the university's 550th anniversary celebration, in appreciation for his eugenics efforts. Laughlin, in his acceptance, stated that the Germans provided the "human seed-stock which ...founded my own country and thus gave basic character to our present lives and institutions". (Smith, p. 158).


The American Eugenics Society has a roundtable discussion at which Nazi eugenicist Maria Kopp reads her paper on eugenic sterilization. Germans based their laws on the sterilization program in California carried out by the Human Betterment Foundation, now known as the Association for Voluntary Sterilization. (Marie Kopp Legal and Medical Aspects of Eugenic Sterilazation in Germany; a talk delivered at the annual meeting of the American Eugenics Society, May 7, 1936).



North Carolina becomes the first state to contribute money to Margaret Sanger's birth control movement. (Diversity Magazine, March/April 1992, p 12, also see Linda Gordon, Woman's Body, Woman's Right).


The NC public health office convinces recalcitrant county health officers to set up birth control clinics by telling them to check their vital statistics, confident that they would discover a high proportion of black births.


Two US Rockefeller grantees, Gregory Pincus and Jacques Loeb, used parthenogenesis (instigated by x-rays, electrical shocks, and chemicals to induce the female into pregnancy) to ostensibly create several pathenogenic "monsters", one of which, a rabbit, was featured on the cover of Look magazine. Rockefeller grants have been instrumental in advancing eugenics and social control ideology since the end of the 19th century. They eventually fund PP, SIECUS, The American Right to Die Society, Alfred Kinsey's sexuality project (see Reader's Digest, April 1997, "Sex, Lies, and the Kinsey Report", p. 59), and the Hastings center, among other resources.



Thirty states in the U.S. have mandatory sterilization laws. (Smith, p. 139). The Knauer infant, a child born blind and having deformed limbs, is starved to death in Germany causing a storm of controversy in Europe. (Lifton, p. 62)



The German T-4 program has begun. Mentally and physically handicapped children are systematically poisoned or starved to death. This is soon expanded to include handicapped adults as well.


Margaret Sanger writes Clarence Gambel, telling him to hire "three or four colored ministers with engaging personalities...we do not want word to get out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it occurs to any of their more rebellious members". (Linda Gordon, Women's Body, Women's Right, A Social History of Birth Control in America p. 333).


The American Birth Control League launches The Negro Project.



Hackett's Handbook for Schooling Hitler Youth explains the Nazi eugenics program. Ich Klage An (I Accuse), a film favorably detailing how a doctor euthanizes his handicapped wife, is released. (Smith p. 165 and Mosse, Towards the Final Solution, p. 216) The Nazi regime recommends that abortion on the mother's request should be approved in order to reduce the surplus population.



The American Birth Control League changes its name to Planned Parenthood.



Planned Parenthood hires a permanent Negro Consultant.



Planned Parenthood policy required the hiring of staff at each clinic which reflected the racial population it served, in order to make birth control more palatable. (Diversity Magazine, March/April p. 14)



The April issue of Scientific American carries the article "How Cells Associate", which describes the cloning and hybridization of amphibian embryos performed by Dr. Clifford Grobstein, professor emeritus at UC, San Diego, member of the American Fertility Society, and a member of the Hastings Center review committee.



Dr. Geoffery Chamberlein, a researcher at George Washington U, obtains several liveborn babies on the abortion schedule and attaches them to an artificial placenta under development. Several hours later, after the necessary data was obtained, the equipment is shut off and the children die. At least one child, a six-month old obtained by hysterotomy, took over 20 minutes to die. Dr. Chamberlein won that year's prize from the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology for "best experiment".


In this year, 41% of poll respondants wanted four or more children. By 1971, the percentage had dropped to 19%. (Celeste Michelle Condit, "Decoding Abortion Rhetoric" p 71, and Gallup 1935-1971, 2168-2169) The Zero Population Growth movement is instrumental in adopting the "unwanted child" rhetoric which eventually is adopted by the pro-abortion movememnt. (Condit, p. 187).



RvW approved. In response to a prize competition from the Population Institution, which wanted television shows dealing with population matters, an episode of the television series "Maude" shows her having an abortion (Condit, p. 124).



Faye Wattleton tells the Washington Times that Margaret Sanger was "devoted to eugenics and the advancement of the perfect race."



Faye Wattleton tells The Humanist Magazine "I am proud to be walking in the footsteps of Margaret Sanger."


Planned Parenthood's definition of abstinence: "Abstinence means making love without having intercourse. It is the most effective form of birth control, has been used for centuries and is still very common. It has no pysical side effects as long as prolonged sexual arousal is followed by orgasm to relieve pelvic congestion." (Boston Women's Health Book Collective, The New Our Bodies, Ourselves, p. 237)



Dr. Ann McLaren, British biologist, a frequent researcher at Cold Springs Harbor and a member of the American Fertility Society is appointed to England's Warnock Committee, which is tasked to discuss whether or not human embryo experimentation should be permitted for the first 14 days. She introduces and popularizes the term "pre-embryo".



70% of Planned Parenthood clinics are located in predominantly black or hispanic neighborhoods. (Diversity, March April, 1992, p. 16).


Germany's decision to exterminate the handicapped, and then the Jews, was merely the next logical step on the path to Utopia. Indeed, the Nazis specifically denied that Darwinism applied to them. They claimed that evolution did not apply to races with strong racial roots, thus their eugenics policies were only meant to prevent the contamination of perfection.


An American Holocaust