1919. Cornelius Vander Starr, the California-born, 27-year-old son of a railroad engineer starts American Asiatic Underwriters Federal Inc. U.S.A. as a property-casualty insurance agency in Shanghai, China.
1921. Starr organizes an AAU sister company, Asia Life Insurance Company, to sell life insurance in China. Legend has it that Starr started the company without having much good mortality data for China.
1926. Starr sets up American International Underwriters, a p-c insurer, in New York. It is Starrs first insurance company that is based in the United States.
1947. Starr incorporates Philippine American Life Insurance Company, a company known for its efforts to finance the construction of housing in the Philippines as well as for life insurance sales.
1951. AIG changes the name of Asia Life to American Life Insurance Company and begins using the company as a vehicle for selling life insurance in Africa and the Middle East as well as in Asia.
1952. AIG acquires a majority stake in Globe & Rutgers Fire Insurance Company, the parent of American Home Assurance Company. American Home is a midsize multiline carrier that was organized in Oklahoma in 1899.
1960. Maurice R. Greenberg, a young lawyer, goes to work for AIG.
1962. Starr names Greenberg president of American Home.