The Cone family had roots in Altenstadt, Swabia, in southern Germany. It was Moses Herman’s father, also called Herman, emigrated to Richmond in 1846 at age 17, where he lived with his older sister and her family. He changed the family surname from Kahn to Cone to adapt to his new environment.

In 1870, Herman Cone and his wife Helen (née Guggenheimer) moved from Jonesborough, Tennessee, to Baltimore, Maryland. At the time, they had seven children; six more followed. In the late nineteenth century, Baltimore was home to a large and thriving German-Jewish community, and the Cones fit in well. This photograph of the Cones playing cards in their home at 1607 Eutaw Place was taken in 1895, two years before Herman’s death.

Their son Moses Herman Cone (June 29, 1857 – December 8, 1908) was an American businessman, textile entrepreneur, conservationist, and philanthropist of the Gilded Age, who was active in the eastern and southern United States. Together with his brother, he founded Cone Export & Commission Company in New York City along with Anderson Price and Jay C. Guggenheimer as the other major stockholders. They also purchased and converted defunct mills to satisfy the demand for cotton fabrics, especially denim. Cone manufactured other unusual textile fabrics, and founded a company that became a leading manufacturer of denim. His company was a major supplier to Levi Strauss and Company for nearly a century.

Moses Herman’s childhood home was torn down to make room for apartment buildings. The first photo shows the elegance of the Eutaw Place neighborhood around 1900. The large brownstone houses faced tree-lined streets and a park-like setting.

Rate us and Write a Review






Your review is recommended to be at least 140 characters long