German family doubtless deriving its name from the German city of Speyer. Members of it had settled in Frankfort-on-the-Main in the sixteenth century; from that city their descendants spread to various countries, and are now to be found in Germany, England, and the United States. The following are the more important members (given in chronological order):

Joseph Michael Speyer:

Parnas and assistant rabbi at Frankfort; died there Oct. 17, 1729. He bequeathed the fund of 4,000 florins known as the "Josef Speyer Stiftung."

Isaac Michael Speyer:

Banker in Frankfort; died at Offenbach, near Frankfort, Dec. 4, 1807. He was a grandson of Joseph Michael Speyer. When the French in 1792 occupied the old German "Reichsstadt," their general, Custine, imposed a heavy contribution upon the city, and took Speyer as one of the hostages for its payment. Speyer at his death left a legacy, the value of which is now (1905) $17,000, and which is known as the "Isaac Michael Speyer Stiftung."

Moses Emanuel Speyer:

Banker at Frankfort and Mittelstadt; died 1801 at the latter place, leaving a fund which was known as the "Moses Emanuel Stiftung."

Gustav Speyer:

Banker; born at Frankfort Feb. 4, 1825; died there July 23, 1883; brother of Philip Speyer. In 1845 he joined his brother in New York, and remained there till 1863, when he returned to Frankfort.

Philip Speyer:

American banker; born at Frankfort; died there April 29, 1876; brother of Gustav Speyer. He emigrated to the United States and founded (1837) in the city of New York the banking-house of Philip Speyer & Co., which later (1876) adopted the firm name of Speyer & Co.

James Joseph Speyer:

American banker; born in the city of New York July 22, 1861; eldest son of Gustav Speyer. He was educated at the Wochler school, Frankfort, entered his father's banking-house there (now the firm of Lazard Speyer-Ellisen), and was employed in the Paris and London branches; in 1885 he returned to New York, in which city he is at present (1905) residing. In 1900 he became the senior member of the New York firm of Speyer & Co. Speyer has been and is much interested in charitable work in New York.

Edgar Speyer:

English banker; born in the city of New York Sept. 7, 1862; younger son of Gustav Speyer. He was educated in the public school of Frankfort, joined his father's banking-house, and in 1886 went to London, where he is now (1905) the senior member of the banking-house of Speyer Brothers.

  • Baer, Stammtafeln der Familie Speyer, Frankfort-on-the-Main, 1896;
  • American Jewish Year Book, 5665 (1905);
  • Who's Who in New York City and State, 1904.
A. F. T. H.
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