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James Armand de Rothschild (1878-1957)

James Armand Edmond ('Jimmy') de Rothschild was the eldest child of Edmond de Rothschild of Paris, where he was born, in the house on rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, on 1 December 1878. During three years at Cambridge University, he developed his Rothschild tastes, particularly horse racing and golf, further. He subsequently became a successful racehorse owner. On 25 February 1913 he married Dorothy Pinto and the couple divided their time between a house in Park Street, London, and an apartment on the Champs Elysées in Paris. In 1922, Jimmy inherited Waddesdon Manor and Eythrope from his cousin Alice and he and Dollie settled into this new career, becoming involved with the political and social life of the area. 

Military and political service

After war service, during which time he visited Palestine and saw something of his father's achievements there, he applied for British citizenship. Jimmy sat in the House of Commons as Liberal MP for the Isle of Ely from 1929 to 1945, and was considered one of the wittiest members in the House. He was also Deputy Lieutenant for the City of London. During the Second World War, when Jimmy was Joint Parliamentary Secretary for the Ministry of Supply, the Waddesdon estate became home to a group of Jewish refugees from Frankfurt. Jimmy became more involved with the new Jewish state, liquidating his father's PICA organisation and making available in his will the funds to establish Yad Hanadiv. He died at Waddesdon Manor on 7 May 1957.

Further papers relating to James and Dorothy are held by The Archive, Windmill Hill, Waddesdon Manor »

James Armand de Rothschild, artefacts, 'Knesset' commemorative medallion, 1966

000/778/1, 1 item

Commemorative silver medallion struck to commemorate the opening of the Knesset in 1966. The medallion features on one side cameo portraits of Edmond and James de Rothschild, and on the other facades of Knesset, and scenes of building work. By P. Voncze. Upon his death, in 1957, James de Rothschild had bequeathed a sum of money to fund the building of a Jewish Parliament House, the Knesset.

James Armand de Rothschild, artefacts, 'Knesset' commemorative medallion, 1966

000/1137/1, 1 item

Commemorative bronze medallion struck to commemorate the opening of the Knesset in 1966. The medallion features on one side cameo portraits of Edmond and James de Rothschild, and on the other facades of Knesset, and scenes of building work. By P. Voncze. Upon his death, in 1957, James de Rothschild had bequeathed a sum of money to fund the building of a Jewish Parliament House, the Knesset.

James Armand de Rothschild, artefacts, jockey's cap, c.1935

000/1991, 1 item

Jockey's Cap in Rothschild Gold by Hermes of Paris. Inside name tag of 'Baron J de Rothschild'.

James Armand de Rothschild, horse-racing ephemera, c.1909

000/2350, 2 items

Cigarette cards featuring jockey in French Rothschild racing colours and the horse ‘Laughing Mirror', owned by James.