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Fosdick, Raymond Blainelocked

(09 June 1883–18 July 1972)
  • Laura A. Miller

Extract

Fosdick, Raymond Blaine (09 June 1883–18 July 1972), lawyer, author, and foundation president, was born in Buffalo, New York to Frank Fosdick, a teacher and school principal, and Amie Weaver. Fosdick’s childhood was a comfortable and content one, if somewhat constrained by his parents’ financial situation, which he described as “always precarious and frequently disastrous.” His parents sought to foster in their children a love of learning, books, and music, as well as a strong devotion to the Baptist faith. They also encouraged intellectual discussion and debate, which sometimes conflicted with Fosdick’s rigid religious upbringing. Out of the family’s Sunday dinner discussions, he recalled developing a growing “conviction . . . that moral values and ideals do not require the abdication of intelligence and critical judgment.” This early realization would profoundly shape Fosdick’s career in public and philanthropic service....

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