Max J. Kohler was eulogized as a champion of human rights, devoted Jew, brilliant lawyer and Jewish historian at memorial services sponsored by twenty-six Jewish, legal and academic organizations yesterday at Temple Emanu-El, Sixty-fifth street and Fifth avenue. More than 500 persons were present.
Speakers were: Rabbi Samuel H. Goldenson, Judge Irving Lehman, Alfred M. Cohen and Dr. A. S. W. Rosenbach. A letter from Judge Julian W. Mack was read.
“He was a Jew who eagerly and proudly proclaimed his Jewish descent,” said Judge Lehman. “He was true to his Jewish ideals.
“To all with whom he came in contact he gave justice. He used his knowledge of the law in protection of the oppressed, and championed the cause of the poor everywhere.
“Max J. Kohler was ready to give all his time and more than all his strength to arouse intelligent public opinion against the horrors in Germany.”
Senator Cohen, president of the B’nai B’rith, spoke of Kohler’s legal battle for liberalization of the immigration laws. As a lawyer, Kohler would never accept a fee from an immigrant whom he defended, Senator Cohen said. He praised Kohler’s “devoted service to the Jews at large.”
A letter from Judge Mack, read by Rabbi Goldenson, told how the late jurist “gave his best without stint for the immigrants.”
“Kohler was the historian of American Jewry,” said Dr. Rosenbach. “Scholars will be indebted to him forever.”
Led by Rabbi Goldenson, the audience joined in the memorial for the dead.
Mr. Kohler died of a heart ailment at Long Lake, N. Y., last July 26.