Albert Hahn was born in Groningen, The Netherlands in 1877. He suffered from tuberculosis as a child, an illness which affected his health throughout his life. A passionate socialist, he started drawing political cartoons for the socialist newspaper Het Volk and its supplement (first Zondagsblad, from 1907 De Notenkraker. During his life he drew about 4000 illustrations, most of which still have actual value.
Albert Hahn believed fervently in the workers' movement, and World War I came as a real shock to him. From 1914 on, he only drew pictures that dealt with the insanity of the war. Unfortunately, he died before it ended, in August 1918. Hahn's stepson, Albert Hahn Jr., continued his father's work by becoming an illustrator for De Notenkraker himself.