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Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

LOUIS D. BEAUMONT FOUNDATION

LOUIS D. BEAUMONT FOUNDATION

The LOUIS D. BEAUMONT FOUNDATION was established in 1943 with $16 million from the estate of Commodore LOUIS D. BEAUMONT (1857-1942), cofounder of the MAY COMPANY OF CLEVELAND. In 1933, Beaumont created the living trust which became the Louis D. Beaumont Foundation after his death. The original purpose of the foundation, according to its incorporation papers, was "to further and promote charitable, scientific, literary, educational and religious objects and purposes." In accordance with the terms of his will, the foundation was terminated in 1977 on the 35th anniversary of his death. With over $30 million in assets, the Beaumont Foundation was the largest private foundation in Cleveland before the final distribution of funds. During its existence, the foundation made total grants of $67.9 million in the four major cities where the May Company operated: St. Louis (headquarters, $18,035,000), Los Angeles ($7,184,000), Denver ($4,224,000), and Cleveland ($26,587,000). Hundreds of local organizations and institutions in Cleveland received financial support from the foundation. Among the most notable Beaumont Foundation gifts were the Edgar A. Hahn Chair of Jurisprudence at the CASE WESTERN RESERVE UNIVERSITY School of Law; Beaumont Hall on the Case Western Reserve University Campus that housed the School for Applied Social Sciences until it was torn down in 1991; an endowed chair at the CLEVELAND ORCHESTRA; support for MT. SINAI MEDICAL CENTER, SAINT ANN FOUNDATION and SAINT VINCENT CHARITY HOSPITAL AND HEALTH CENTER; and Boy Scouts' Beaumont Reservation in Rock Creek, Ohio. The JEWISH ORPHAN ASYLUM, the COMMUNITY FUND, the Jewish Welfare Fund, and the BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA (BSA) each received $50,000. The foundation also helped launch CUYAHOGA COMMUNITY COLLEGE with a gift of $50,000 in 1963 and WVIZ, an educational television station, with a gift of $75,000 in 1964. Original foundation trustees were NATHAN L. DAUBY, who prompted Beaumont's decision to create the foundation, Morton J. May, and NATHAN LOESER, succeeded by EDGAR HAHN.


See also PHILANTHROPY and FOUNDATIONS.