Five College Archives and Manuscript
                        Collections
Home >> Amherst College Archives & Special Collections >> Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection
Amherst College seal
Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection, 1954-2013 (Bulk: 1959-1980)
5 records storage boxes, 1 half archives box (5.2 linear ft.)
Collection number: MA.00304

Abstract:
The Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection documents the granting activities over the lifetime of this charitable trust, which was established after the death of Charles E. Merrill (AC 1908) according to instructions laid out in his will. The bulk of the collection consists of bound volumes of financial updates and funding recommendations that were sent to trustees prior to their meetings

Terms of Access and Use:

Restrictions on access:

There is no restriction on access to the Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection for research use. Particularly fragile items are restricted for preservation purposes.

Restrictions on use:

Requests for permission to publish material from the Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection should be directed to the Archives and Special Collections. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights.

Amherst College Archives and Special Collections
Amherst, MA

Historical Note

The Charles E. Merrill Trust was established after the death in 1956 of Charles Edward Merrill (AC 1908), founder of Merrill Lynch & Co. Merrill laid out instructions for the Trust in his will, including naming the administrator and five original trustees, and instructing that the Trust's activities be concluded within twenty years. The Trust's money multiplied considerably after Merrill Lynch & Co. went public in 1972, and the Trust received a judge's approval to extend the timeframe by three years.

Over its twenty-three year existence the trustees distributed over $114 million to 5,000 projects, and by the end they were receiving approximately 12,000 funding requests per year. Twenty percent of the Trust's income went to Amherst College, twenty percent to seven other named beneficiaries (schools and hospitals), and the remaining sixty percent was divided equally in three categories: education, religion (ten percent Protestant, five percent each to Catholic and Jewish), and established charitable, scientific, or religious institutions.

At the time it was established, funds for the Charles E. Merrill Trust were taxable because the Trust owned a large amount of Merrill Lynch and Co. Because of this, various parties interested in the Charles E. Merrill Trust lobbied Congress and were instrumental in passing H.R. 8265 (Public Law 85-367) on April 7, 1958. This very limited law gave the Trust's funds tax-exempt status.

There were only five trustees at a given time during the life of the Trust, and the grants reflected the particular interest of those trustees. The original trustees appointed in Charles E. Merrill's will were: Winthrop Smith, Sam Marks, Robert A. Magowan, Charles Cole, and Charles Merrill Jr. Marks was replaced by Doris Magowan in 1960, Smith was replaced in 1961 by Donald Regan, Peter Magowan replaced Cole after Cole's death in 1978, and Mary Merrill replaced Donald Regan as a trustee for the Trust's final meeting. The administrator for the life of the Trust was Dr. David A. Thomas, Dean of the Cornell University School of Business and Public Administration.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection consists of 5 linear feet of material documenting the decision-making activities of the charitable organization's trustees. The bulk of the collection dates from 1959 to 1980 and consists of bound volumes of grant recommendations compiled by the Charles E. Merrill Trust administrator, David A. Thomas, and sent to the Board of Trustees prior to their meetings. These copies have "Mrs. Robert A. Magowan" (Doris Merrill Magowan) typed on the front, indicating that they were originally her copies. Each bound volume begins with an introductory letter from Mr. Thomas, including an update on funds available for distribution, a summary of the grants approved at the previous meeting, and a summary of the recommendations for the coming meeting. The grant applications are then included in the report that follows. Many volumes include handwritten notes, and some include photographs, architect-tural plans, or other supplementary material for the grant proposals. As the granting responsibili-ties were divided more in later years between the Trustees, this is reflected in the reports, with recommended grants listed under each Trustee's name.

Also included in the collection are two copies of a report commissioned by Charles E. Merrill in 1954 entitled The Philanthropy of Charles E. Merrill, Book I, and written by David A. Thomas. This report examined Merrill's past giving and provided recommendations in establishing a trust.

The collection also includes three published books by Charles E. Merrill, Jr., which are not directly related to operations of the Charles E. Merrill Trust, as well as correspondence between Charles Merrill, Jr. and Mary J. Oates. This correspondence details the transfer of the rest of the Merrill Trust Collection to Oates, as well as providing more background on the Trust and about Charles Merrill, Jr.'s continuing philanthropic and political activities. There is also a small amount of correspondence between Oates and the administrator of a university in Czechoslovakia regarding book donations Oates made to the university library on behalf of Regis College, at the recommendation of Charles Merrill, Jr.


Information on Use
Terms of Access and Use
Restrictions on access:

There is no restriction on access to the Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection for research use. Particularly fragile items are restricted for preservation purposes.

Restrictions on use:

Requests for permission to publish material from the Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection should be directed to the Archives and Special Collections. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights.

Preferred Citation

Please use the following format when citing materials from this collection:

[Identification of item], in Charles E. Merrill Trust Collection [Box #, Folder #], Amherst College Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College Library

History of the Collection

Gift by Mary J. Oates, 2012. Accession #2012-037, 2013-075.

Custodial history:

Donor Mary J. Oates is the author of The Catholic Philanthropic Tradition in America. The collection had been given to her on November 21, 1989 by Charles E. Merrill, Jr. while she was researching American philanthropy.

Processing Information

Processed by Claire Lobdell, Merrill Project Archivist, July-August 2013.


Additional Information
Contact Information
Amherst College Archives and Special Collections
Robert Frost Library
PO Box 5000
Amherst, MA 01002-5000

Phone: (413) 542-2299
Fax: (413) 542-2692

Email Reference Form: http://www.amherst.edu/library/archives/askus
URL: http://www.amherst.edu/library/archives
Language
English, Polish
Sponsor
Merrill Family

Contents List
Series 1, CHARLES E. MERRILL TRUST DOCUMENTS
1959-1980


Contains the bound volumes of grant recommendations and the 1954 report The Philanthropy of Charles E. Merrill, Book I.

The Philanthropy of Charles E. Merrill, Book I, a report by Professor David A. Thomas of the Cornell University School of Business and Public Administration, compiled at Merrill's request.
1954

Box 1
September 1959 Recommendations
1959

Box 1
March 1960 Recommendations
1960

Box 1
September 1960 Recommendations
1960

Box 1
March 1961 Recommendations
1961

Box 1
September 1961 Recommendations
1961

Box 1
March 1962 Recommendations
1962

Box 1
September 1962 Recommendations
1962

Box 1
March 1963 Recommendations
1963

Box 1
September 1963 Recommendations
1963

Box 1
March 1964 Recommendations
1964

Box 1
September 1964 Recommendations
1964

Box 1
March 1965 Recommendations
1965

Box 1
September 1965 Recommendations
1965

Box 1
Copy of The Philanthropy of Charles E. Merrill, Book I, with introductory letter dated March 11, 1966.
1954-1966

Box 1
March 1966 Recommendations
1966

Box 1
September 1966 Recommendations
1966

Box 1
March 1967 Recommendations
1967

Box 1
September 1967 Recommendations
1967

Box 1
February 1968 Recommendations
1968

Box 2
September 1968 Recommendations
1968

Box 2
March 1969 Recommendations
1969

Box 2
September 1969 Recommendations
1969

Box 2
April 1970 Recommendations
1970

Box 2
September 1970 Recommendations
1970

Box 2
April 1971 Recommendations
1971

Box 2
September 1971 Recommendations
1971

Box 2
November 1971 Recommendations
1971

Box 2
January 1972 Recommendations
1972

Box 2
April 1972 Recommendations (2 folders)
1972

Box 2
June 1972 Recommendations
1972

Box 2
August 1972 Recommendations (2 folders)
1972

Box 2
November 1972 Recommendations
1972

Box 3
February 1973 Recommendations (2 folders)
1973

Box 3
June 1973 Recommendations
1973

Box 3
November 1973 Recommendations
1973

Box 3
April 1974 Recommendations (2 folders)
1974

Box 3
July 1974 Recommendations
1974

Box 3
March 1975 Recommendations
1975

Box 3
July 1975 Recommendations
1975

Box 3
November 1975 Recommendations (2 folders)
1975

Box 3
April 1976 Recommendations (2 folders)
1976

Box 3
June 1976 Recommendations
1976

Box 3
December 1976 Recommendations (2 folders)
1976

Box 3
March 1977 Recommendations (3 folders)
1977

Box 4
June 1977 Recommendations
1977

Box 4
November 1977 Recommendations (3 folders)
1977

Box 4
February 1978 Recommendations Volumes I-III
1978

Box 4
June 1978 Recommendations
1978

Box 4
September 1978 Recommendations Volumes I-II
1978

Box 4
April 1979 Recommendations Volumes I-III
1979

Box 5
June 1979 Recommendations
1979

Box 5
November 1979 Recommendations Volumes I-II
1979

Box 5
March 1980 Recommendations Volumes I-II
1980

Box 5
June 1980 Recommendations
1980

Box 5
November 1980 Recommendations Volumes I-II
1980

Box 5
Series 2: CORRESPONDENCE AND BOOKS
1987-2013


Contains the correspondence between Charles Merrill, Jr. and Mary J. Oates, and between Oates and Emil Vontorčik related to Charles Merrill, Jr.

The Journey: Massacre of the Innocents, by Charles Merrill. (1996) Cambridge: Kenet Media. Contains an inscription to Mary Oates and a handwritten note to Mary from Charles Merrill
1996

Box 5
The Walled Garden: The Story of a School, by Charles Merrill. (1982) Boston: Rowan Tree Press. Signed by Charles Merrill. Interleaved are a copy of "The Commonwealth School: Letters to a Young Teacher," dated August 1975, and a 1993 article from the Wall Street Journal about James Merrill's memoir, A Different Person.
1982

Box 5
Rok Emiliki, by Charles Merrill, trans. Piotr Mróz. Kraków: Agencja Wydawnicza. (Polish translation of Emily's Year by Charles Merrill).
1992

Box 5
Charles Merrill, Jr. and Mary J. Oates correspondence
1987-1988

Box 6: folder 1
Charles Merrill, Jr. and Mary J. Oates correspondence
1989

Box 6: folder 2
Charles Merrill, Jr., Mary J. Oates and Emil Vontorčik correspondence
1990-1991

Box 6: folder 3
Charles Merrill, Jr. and Mary J. Oates correspondence
1995-1998

Box 6: folder 4
Charles Merrill, Jr. and Mary J. Oates correspondence
2000-2001

Box 6: folder 5
Charles Merrill, Jr. and Mary J. Oates correspondence
2003-2007

Box 6: folder 6
Charles Merrill, Jr. and Mary J. Oates correspondence
2013

Box 6: folder 7

Search Terms
The following terms represent persons, organizations, and topics documented in this collection. Use these headings to search for additional materials on this web site, in the Five College Library Catalog, or in other library catalogs and databases.

Subjects
  • Charitable uses, trusts, and foundations--United States.
  • Endowments.
  • Merrill Family.
  • Merrill Lynch & Co. (1915-1940)
  • Merrill, Charles, 1885-1956.
  • Philanthropists.

Contributors
  • Merrill, Charles E., Jr., 1920-
  • Merrill, Charles, 1885-1956.
  • Oates, Mary J.
  • Thomas, David Ansell, 1917-


Questions about this collection? Contact the archives
Home | Help | About | Search