From the Newsletter of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies
MAPS - Volume 8 Number 3 Autumn 1998 - p.34

Heffter Research Institute Autumn 98 Update

David E. Nichols, Ph.D.
President, Heffter Research Institute

As we approach the fifth anniversary of our incorporation in 1993, is it only wishful thinking or a real feeling of permanency that is starting to develop?

The Institute continues to make excellent progress. Of course, many MAPS members have already seen the first issue of the Heffter Review of Psychedelic Research, and several of our Scientific Advisors have offered to author a chapter in the next volume. We have now reviewed and funded, or co-funded with MAPS, a number of small research proposals.

Although the level of donations to the Institute is still inadequate to make a significant impact on the whole field, it is gratifying to feel like we are at least taking small steps. The web page ( continues to generate interest, and our printed materials are also undergoing revision. As we approach the fifth anniversary of our incorporation in 1993, is it only wishful thinking or a real feeling of permanency that is starting to develop? The Board members themselves are increasingly being asked for consultation on a number of issues related to psychedelic drugs. We have recently decided to bring on board a part-time fundraising expert to help us increase the level of contributions to the Institute so that we can fulfill our mission. Development of a not-for-profit institute that does not provide memberships, or immediate visible benefits to the donor, has proven to be a far greater task than we originally imagined, but we are hopeful that in the next twelve months we can begin to meet this challenge! It is crucial in the coming months, when it seems that increasing attention (and money) is being targeted to the "drug war," that we clearly carve out a niche for the medical and scientific value of psychedelics. These substances are far too important to be ignored for another generation.

On an interesting historical note, we received an e-mail from one of Arthur Heffter's grandsons, Dr. Lutz Rohrschneider. It seems that the descendants of Arthur Heffter had a family reunion in April 1998 and Lutz was kind enough to send me the family tree that had its roots with Arthur and Else Heffter. Although Arthur Heffter had no sons, he did have five daughters. They all married and had 3-7 children each. What is amazing about the Heffter family is that there is a very high percentage of doctors (both M.D.s and Professors) among his descendants. Indeed, Lutz Rohrschneider has a Ph.D., he married a physician, and they had twin sons, both of whom became physicians. In one very notable example, Arthur Heffter's daughter Elisabeth married Prof. Dr. Hans Geiger, the inventor of the Geiger counter! (And two of their sons also became professors). Heffter's distinguished descendants themselves represent a rather remarkable legacy for the people of Germany. Lutz said that he read the Heffter Institute web page, wondering who could have "remembered this remarkable man, who is unknown now in Germany." Although it was clear from the remarks of his colleagues and students that Arthur Heffter was a remarkable scientist and mentor, Heffter was also a devoted family man, who is warmly remembered nearly 75 years after his death by a large and very successful family. When we first named the Institute after Arthur Heffter, we knew of his important scientific contributions, but knew nothing of the personal traits that now seem to make him even more ideal to be the namesake of the Institute.

Heffter Research Institute
369 Montezuma Avenue, No. 153
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501-2626
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