Welcome toThe Rothschild Archive'swebsite

Sources for business history: catalogues of bank files

Sources for art history: Catalogue of the pictures of Alfred de Rothschild 1901

Sources for yachting history: Plans for Nathaniel von Rothschild's yacht Veglia 1905

Sources for natural history: Walter 2nd Lord Rothschild and his zebra carriage: c.1910

Sources for global financial history: Map of lines of the Brazil Railway Company: c.1920

Sources for business history: index cards to bank files

Sources for social history: Rothschild Hospital Paris: 1920s

Sources for business history: detail of a Rothschild bond coupon

Sources for architectural history: Halton House: 1890s

Sources for the history of travel: Lionel de Rothschild's tours of Spain: 1909

Sources for local history: Tring Park: c.1900

Sources for Royal history: shooting party with Edward Prince of Wales: 1893

Sources for political history: Lionel de Rothschild: first Jewish MP: 1858

Sources for sporting history: St Amant winner of the Derby: 1904

Sources for local history: gardeners at Aston Clinton: 1899

Sources for Rothschild family history: Lionel de Rothschild's yacht Rhodora: 1927

Sources for London history: entrance to New Court: 1965

Sources for design history: plans for Lionel de Rothschild's Rolls-Royce: 1930

Sources for business history: Rothschild gold bars produced by the Royal Mint Refinery: 1930s

Sources for business history: letters of August Belmont Rothschild Agent in New York: 1860s

Exhibition - Rothschilds and Brazil

5: Coffee

Coffee was the major product of Brazil, but the quadrupling of production in São Paulo state between 1870 and 1900, stimulated in large part by the growth of the railways, was the beginning of decades of problems with excessive supply. Up until 1930 federal and state governments responded to oversupply by attempting to support the price of coffee through stockpiling.

The bank was sceptical of such 'valorisation' schemes, but on the telegraphed advice in 1922 of Henry Lynch, their agent in Brazil, eventually felt they had to become involved lest they lose business to other firms:

"As you have not favoured policy up to the present I venture to suggest continue your policy pending result elections but if Brazilian Federal Government present or future determined sustain policy in my opinion against your interest to decline for we cannot help thinking others will make capital of financial agents not supporting government when money market permit others to do so."

As a result the bank participated in the 1922 loan to Brazil intended to help finance the stock-piling of coffee. With a £9,000,000 loan secured on 3,000,000 sacks of coffee, the government had to protect this economically vital commodity.  In 1924, as agents for the Brazilian government, Rothschilds sought out insurance for the coffee, gathering information about fire protection in the warehouses across the state of São Paulo.

Bond coupons issued on coffee security

Bond coupons issued on coffee security

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Fire protection at a coffee warehouse

Fire protection at a coffee warehouse