In partnership with the Maine Memory Network Maine Memory Network

Maine Memory Network

Hermann Kotzschmar: Portland's Musical Genius

Painting of Hermann Kotzschmar, Portland, 1895

Painting of Hermann Kotzschmar, Portland, 1895

Item 7175 info
First Parish in Portland

Along with the accolades he received from his admiring public in the form of applause, compliments, and a Jubilee celebration, Hermann Kotzschmar was the recipient of several other tangible honors during his life in Maine.

For example, in 1891, Horatio Nelson Jose, a local businessman and real estate holder, erected a beautiful, intimate-sized concert building on Congress Street in Portland.

Jose was a great lover of music and the arts, and an ardent admirer of the organist at First Parish Church, so he named his new building 'Kotzschmar Hall.'

When Kotzschmar celebrated 40 years at First Parish Church, the Trustees sent him an ornate repousse Tiffany silver bowl.

In 1895 the Rev. John Carroll Perkins, minister at First Parish, commissioned a young artist to do an oil painting of the musician that now hangs in the church building.

In 1900, a group of Portland musicians who often met in the late afternoons to play chamber music decided to formalize their time together by creating an association to "cultivate and maintain an interest in legitimate music in Maine." The group decided to call themselves the Kotzschmar Club, and the organization still flourishes 106 years later.

In recognition of his many contributions to music, Hermann Kotzschmar received two honorary degrees: Master of Arts from Bowdoin College, Brunswick, in 1903, and Doctor of Music from Eberhardt College in 1905.

Item 17 of 18