Welcome toThe Rothschild Archive'swebsite

Sources for business history

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 - From Bank to Westminster

1: Lionel de Rothschild's journey to parliament, 1847-1858

In one generation covering the first third of the nineteenth century, the Rothschild family emerged from the Jewish ghetto in Frankfurt to become figures on the international stage, known throughout the western world as leading international bankers and as - probably - the world's wealthiest family.

Nathan Mayer Rothschild had come to Manchester in 1798 as a textile merchant. In 1806 he married Hannah Barent Cohen, the daughter of a wealthy London Jewish merchant, and began to move his business to London. Nathan had been passionate in his concern for Jewish issues and for minority rights in general. He had worked hard to achieve greater rights for Jews, particularly in the 1820s at the time when the fight for Catholic Emancipation was going on. He used such influence as he could with politicians to achieve similar freedoms - but to no avail.

Baron Lionel de Rothschild, banker and MP

Nathan's son Lionel (1808-1879) was born in London. As a young man he served an apprenticeship in the banking houses of his father and his uncles. Even so, when his father died unexpectedly in 1836, Lionel found himself, at the age of 28, the heir to the most successful London bank of the age and a figure on the international stage.

Lionel was elected to serve as MP for the City of London in 1847. He would not be able to take his seat for another eleven years until the discriminatory legislation against Jews was removed.

You can follow his journey here...

Lionel Nathan de Rothschild by Moritz Daniel Oppenheim (National Portrait Gallery London)

Lionel Nathan de Rothschild by Moritz Daniel Oppenheim (National Portrait Gallery London)