- COHEN, family of Liverpool (England) merchants and public servants. LOUIS SAMUEL COHEN (1846–1922) was born in Sydney (Australia), and went to England in 1859. In 1864 he joined a relative, David Lewis, who owned a clothing store, becoming head of the business on the death of David Lewis in 1885 and developing it into Lewis', Ltd., one of the largest department chain stores in the north of England. A generous supporter of local charities, he was prominent in local synagogue life and Jewish institutions. He became a member of the Liverpool city council in 1895 and served as lord mayor in 1899–1900. His eldest son, HAROLD LEOPOLD (1873–1936), succeeded his father as chairman of Lewis'. Among his benefactions was a gift cohen of £100,000 for the building of Liverpool University Library. Another son, REX D. COHEN (1876–1928), remained in the family business and left over £1.6 million upon his death. Louis Samuel's eighth child, SIR JACK BRUNEL COHEN (1886–1956), lost both legs in World War I. From 1918 to 1931 he was a member of parliament representing Liverpool and for many years was national treasurer of the British Legion. SIR REX ARTHUR LOUIS COHEN (d. 1988), grandson of Louis Samuel (1906–1988), was chairman of Lewis' from 1958 to 1965, when the business passed from family control. For several years he was president of the Liverpool Jewish Welfare Board. (Sefton D. Temkin)
Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.