Henry Pratt Fairchild bigraphy, stories - Professor of Sociology in first half of twentieth century

Henry Pratt Fairchild : biography

1880 - 1956

Henry Pratt Fairchild (1880–1956) was a distinguished American sociologist. He was a sociologist who was actively involved in many of the controversial issues of his time. He wrote about race relations, abortion and contraception, and immigration. He was involved with the founding of Planned Parenthood and served as President to the American Eugenics Society.


Early life

Fairchild was born in Dundee, Illinois. His father was Arthur Babbitt Fairchild, a descendant of Thomas Fairchild who settled in New England in 1639 and his mother a member of the Pratt industrialist family.

Fairchild grew up in Crete, Nebraska, where his father was professor at Doane College. Fairchild attended Doane (AB, 1900) and Yale University (PhD, 1909). He also received an honorary LL.D. from Doane in 1930.

Education and Early Career

Teaching at Bowdoin.

Organizer and Professor

Fairchild was president of the Population Association of America from 1931-1935(?). He was president of the American Sociological Society in 1936.

He was active with Margaret Sanger in founding Planned Parenthood.

Fairchild’s major teaching appointment was at New York University. He served for 26 years, from 1919 until his retirement in 1945, and became chairman of the Department of Sociology in the Graduate School. Much of his work focused on race, nationalism, immigration, and ethnic conflict.

Fairchild was a brother of Fred Rogers Fairchild, an economist and educator, and the son and grandson of college presidents.

Living octopus

Living octopus

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