Otto Hermann Kahn bigraphy, stories - Banker

Otto Hermann Kahn : biography

February 21, 1867 - March 29, 1934

Otto Hermann Kahn (February 21, 1867 – March 29, 1934) was an investment banker, collector, philanthropist, and patron of the arts.


"The deadliest foe of democracy is not autocracy but liberty frenzied. Liberty is not foolproof. For its beneficent working it demands self-restraint, a sane and clear recognition of the practical and attainable, and of the fact that there are laws of nature which are beyond our power to change." (from a speech given at the University of Wisconsin–Madison)

On business: "It has long been our policy and our effort to get our clients, not by chasing after them, not by praising our own wares, but by an attempt to establish a reputation. . . . We have no show window; our only attractiveness is our good name and our reputation for sound advice and integrity. . . . If we do not live up to what they [our clients] believe is our capacity, and to what they believe is the value of our sponsorship, of our trade-mark, they will quit us. And we have no means to prevent them."



  • Bernhard Kahn (b. May 23, 1827, Stebbach, Germany - d. March 8, 1905, Heidelberg, Germany)
    • A son of Michael Kahn and Franziska Baer, a German-Jewish industrialist and banker who participated in the 1848 Revolt, and was condemned to death. He escaped to the United States, was naturalized an American citizen, and then returned to Germany ten years later to court and on October 17, 1860, marry Emma Stephanie Eberstadt, whom he married on the condition that he not return to the United States.
  • Emma Stephanie Eberstadt (b. October 29, 1840, Worms - d. June 26, 1906, Berlin)
    • First daughter and third child of the Worms merchant and Burgermeister Ferdinand Eberstadt and his wife, Sara Zelie Seligmann.

The couple had eight children of whom Otto was the fifth child and third son. His siblings were:

  • Franz Michael Kahn (b. August 2, 1861, Mannheim, Germany - d. December 6, 1904, Strasbourg, France [in 1904: Straßburg, Germany]), German jurist
  • Clara Maria (b. June 29, 1863, Mannheim, Germany - d. January 29, 1922, Berlin, Germany), married to Paul Jonas, German lawyer and AEG board member
  • Robert Kahn (b. July 21, 1865, Mannheim, Germany - d. May 29, 1951, Biddenden, Great Britain), German composer
  • Elisabeth Franziska, called ‘Lili’ (b. August 19, 1869, Mannheim, Germany - d. 1940? [missing after April 17, 1940, Ostend, Belgium]), married to Felix Deutsch, German industrialist, co-founder and director of AEG
  • Paul Friedrich Kahn (b. February 1, 1870, Mannheim, Germany - d. February 12, 1947, Athens, Greece), private secretary to Gerhart Hauptmann, later AEG director in Athens
  • Felix Paul Kahn (b. January 25, 1873, Mannheim, Germany, d. July 25, 1950, New York City), banker at Kuhn, Loeb & Co., director of the Paramount Pictures Corporation, noted violin collector
  • Hedwig (b. June 17, 1876, Mannheim, Germany - d. after 1950, London, Great Britain [?]), married names Meier and Pollack


  • Addie Wolff Kahn (b. June 10, 1875 - d. May 15, 1949, London)


  • Maud (Momo) Emily Wolff Kahn (b. July 23, 1897, Morristown, New Jersey - d. October 24, 1960, New York City);
    • Married June 15, 1920, Cold Spring Harbor, New York, John Charles Oakes Marriott (later Major-General Sir John Marriott), (b. 1895, Stowmarket, Great Britain - d. September 11, 1978, Great Britain), one child
  • Margaret (Nin) Dorothy Wolff Kahn (b. July 4, 1901, Morristown, New Jersey - d. January 26, 1995, New York City);
    • Married February 9, 1928, New York City, John Barry Ryan Jr. (b. 1901, USA - d. January 21, 1966, Cold Spring Harbor, New York), two children, John Barry Ryan III and Virginia Fortune Ryan (Countess of Airlie)
  • Gilbert Wolff Kahn (b. July 18, 1903, Morristown, New Jersey - d. December 15, 1975, Old Brookville, Long Island);
    • Married November 19, 1924, New York City, Anne Elizabeth Whelan, one child, Claire Ann, divorced;
    • Married February 1, 1933, New York City, Sara Jane Heliker, a Broadway dancer, b. 1912, Milwaukee, Wisconsin - d. 1988, Largo, Pinellas County, Florida, one child, Gilbert W. Jr (b.? - d. 2008), divorced;
    • Married June 30, 1938, New York City, Polly Stover, a fashion model (died 2006)
Living octopus

Living octopus

In countries which are located near sea coasts, sea food is an important part of national cuisine