ARTISTS

Amita Arthur & Bond Asahi Shoten Ashihara Fujii, Yoshitoyo Fukui Hagiya, Katsuhira Hattori, Kintaro Ikeda, Seisuke G. Ikoma Kagawa, Katsuhiro Kawano, Yoshinosuke Komai, Otojiro Komai, Seibei Kuhn & Komor Kumeno, Teitaro Kuroda, Kiichi Kyoto Damascene Mitsui, Yoshio Mitsukoshi Miyamoto Shoko Murakami Toyo Nagata Namikawa, Yasuyuki Nogawa, Noboru Ogurusu Ohayo Okubo Brothers Samurai Shokai Takeda Brothers Uyeda, Kichigoro Yamanaka

Amita Co. artists: Minai, Torahiko Kanamori, Takeshi

Other artists

KUHN & KOMOR 康茂洋行 (1869-1930)

HISTORY

In 1869, Moritz Montague Kuhn, a jewish immigrant founded in Yokohama the Kuhn & Co., forming the nucleus of the developing curio trade in Japan regarding the company of "Kuhn & Komor". "Curio" was an abbreviation in the 19th century for curiosities that related primarily to objects of the Far East and in the broadest sense included "Souvenirs".

Siegfried Komor came to Japan in 1887 and was employed by his uncle M. M. Kuhn, in Kuhn & Co. Soon afterwards, in 1890, Arthur Kuhn, Moritz's son, came to Japan and started to work with his father, M. M. Kuhn and his cousin, Siegfried Komor. In 1894, Siegfried Komor and Arthur Kuhn founded "Kuhn & Komor" in Yokohama.

Interior of the Kuhn & Komor store in Yokohama

Soon afterwards, Arthur Kuhn opened a branch of this company in Hong Kong with a shop in the Hong Kong Hotel, Queen's Road. Kuhn & Komor carried out works of art in silver, bronze, porcelain, cloisonne, ivory, wood, silk, and other materials. They employed Japanese silversmiths at a time when these artisans were highly regarded all over the world.

Kuhn & Komor store in Shanghai

Isidor Komor, Siegfried's brother, came with his wife Frieda and sons Paul and George to Hong Kong in 1896. Already in 1897 Isidor Komor left Hong Kong and moved with family to Yokohama. They stayed only a short time in Yokohama. In 1898, the family moved to Shanghai, where Isidor Komor together with Arthur Kuhn founded another branch of Kuhn & Komor, at first located in the opulent Shanghai Palace Hotel; later Kuhn & Komor developed their headquarters in Shanghai. The family lived permanently in Shanghai.

Komor family in Shanghai in 1922 (from left to right: Isidor, Adele, Peter, Leonard and Paul Komor)

Kuhn & Komor family tree

Paul Komor (1886-1973), which born in Budapest was the eldest child of Isidor and Frieda (Abeles) Komor and the grandson of Salomon Kohn, a Hungarian Jew who officially "Magyarized" the family name in 1881. Paul was educated at the German language Kaiser Wilhelm Schule in Shanghai.

Paul Komor

In 1915 at the age of nineteen, Paul married Adele Rogalsky, the daughter of a Jewish family from the Crimea, who had come to Shanghai from Harbin in 1912. Their first son, Leonard Andrew, was born in 1917 and their second, Peter Sandor, in 1921.

In March 1919 when all "enemy" nationals were forced to leave Shanghai, Paul and his father were repatriated by the British to Hamburg, Germany. The following January Paul returned to Shanghai. His father rejoined him only in 1933 after the death of Paul's mother. In 1924 Paul was baptized in the German Evangelical Church in Shanghai together with his wife and children. Paul's business career began with the management of a tannery in Shanghai. Subsequently, he ran the China Import Company with his brother-in-law. A staunch Hungarian patriot, Paul Komor was named Honorary Consul General for Hungary in Shanghai in the 1930s. During the summer of 1938 he was approached by business associates of Sir Victor Sassoon, a wealthy Iraqi Jew with British citizenship, to head a committee that would be underwritten by Sassoon, to deal with the wave of Jewish refugees arriving in Shanghai from Nazi Germany. Together with Eduard Kann, Aladair Kelen and Michael Speelman, Komor established the International Committee for European Immigrants in China on August 7, 1938.

Paul Komor (third from the left) attends a soccer match in October 27, 1940

It was referred to as the I.C. or Komor Committee. Komor headed the committee until his sudden arrest by Japanese naval intelligence in January 1942 at I.C. headquarters in the Cathay Hotel. Apparently, he was suspected of being a British spy because of his close association with Sir Victor Sassoon. Komor remained in custody in a room at the hotel until March, when he was abruptly released. Although the Japanese prohibited him from returning to the I.C., the committee continued to function for some time. Komor remained in Shanghai until April 1948 when he immigrated to the United States. He settled with his wife in Santa Cruz, California, where he lived out the rest of his life.

K & K company existed until about the 1930's. The outbreak of World War II brought it to an end.

ADDRESS

Kuhn&Co:
79 Main street, Yokohama (1881)
57 Main street, Yokohama (1903)

Kuhn&Komor branches:
37 Water street, Yokohama
81, opposite to "Oriental Hotel", Kobe
Under the "Hongkong Hotel", Hongkong
2 Nanking road, "Central Hotel" building, Shanghai
25, Raffles square, Singapore

MARKS



Kuhn&Komor trade mark

ADVERTISEMENTS

Kuhn&Co

1880
1881
1892
1903

1903
1911

Kuhn&Komor

1894
1894
1899
1899

1901
1901
1903
1903

1903
1903
1906
1907

1911

Business cards

Business Card #1, Side A
(1906)
Business Card #1, Side B
(1906)

Records from old books

1894
1899
1899
1908

1909
1910
1912
1913

1914
1917

Postcards

1895

EXAMPLES (from my collection)

References: