Harry Laughlin

1880-1943

Laughlin directed the Eugenics Record Office for Davenport from 1910-1939.† He wrote the Model Sterilization Law that was adopted in many states.† In 1936, the Nazis honored him by awarding him an honorary doctorate from Heidelberg University, but even Davenport was scandalized by that, and had Laughlin collect his diploma at the German Embassy in New York.† He didnít appreciate it, but he became the first human geneticist to have to grapple with a question that has haunted the field ever since:† What is it about me that the Nazis like so much?