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New Court Archive Department and successors: sundry papers

New Court Archive Department

An Archive Department was maintained at the second New Court, with clerks keeping volumes and files in good order in the Archive Strongroom in the New Court vault. In the 1920s, a finding aid, now referred to as the 'Old Catalogue' was compiled by the filing clerks when the Bank's filing system was being reorganised. The clerks were also responsible for parcelling up old records and recording the contents of each parcel or volume with covering dates.

During the Second World War, at the behest of Anthony de Rothschild (1887-1961) volumes and parcels of NMR archives were sent to Tring Park, Hertfordshire, the country seat of Nathaniel, 2nd Lord Rothschild (1840-1915), where much of the business had been re-located from New Court for the duration. After the war, when Tring Park was sold by Victor, 3rd Lord Rothschild (1910-1990), the archives were removed to Exbury in Hampshire, the home of Edmund de Rothschild (1916-2007).

Archives & Records Department

It was Victor, 3rd Lord Rothschild, who, in the late 1970s, with the encouragement of the historian J. H. Plumb, then Master of Christ's College, Cambridge, took the first steps towards putting the records of the London business in order so as to make them available to the research community. An Archivist was appointed and work began on sorting the records and systematising procedures for access. When the first Archivist was appointed in 1978, his initial task was to supervise the return of the archives from Exbury to New Court, for cataloguing and sorting. The Archives & Records Department was based at New Court with a Corporate Records facility being established at Crimscott Street in Bermondsey for semi-current records of the businesss.

The creation of The Rothschild Archive Trust

Until 1999, the Archives & Records Department was responsible for both the historic archives of NMR and current and sem-current records. In 1999, The Rothschild Archive Trust was created and the Board of Directors of N M Rothschild & Sons Limited, under the Chairmanship of Sir Evelyn de Rothschild, formally gifted the archives of the London business (consisting largely of the historic business archives of the London house, N M Rothschild & Sons Limited) to a newly established body of Trustees. At the same time, responsibility for the collection of papers of the French business, (then held by the Archives Nationales du Monde du Travaild in Roubaix France. but originally deposited by by the French business with the Archives Nationales in Paris in 1972) was transferred to the Trustees. 

A new separate Corporate Records Department was established by NMR in 1999 to manage its current and semi-current records. A memorandum of understanding was established to ensure the future transfer of archives to The Rothschild Archive Trust. The NMR Corporate Records Department was based at Crimscott Street until that facility was closed in 2010, when the fourth New Court was built.

NMR Archive Department and successors: Finding Aids, index books, c.1920-1990

000/2083, 48 volumes

A collection of docket books, catalogues and notebooks and indexes recording the reference numbers and titles of volumes, files and papers of various departments of the business kept by the Archive Department and later the Archives & Records Department and Corporate Records Department. Entries are marked to note files destroyed, or transferred to the Archives. These are original finding aids to records of the business. From c.1990, this information was recorded digitally.

NMR Archive Department and successors: Finding Aids, filing cards, c.1920-1990

000/2347, 1 item

Catalogue cards in a nine-drawer filing cabinet recording the refernce numbers and titles of files and papers of various departments of the business kept by the Archive Department and later the Archives & Records Department and Corporate Records Department. Entries are marked to note files destroyed, or transferred to the Archives. These are original finding aids to records of the business.

NMR Archive Department: sundry 'historical papers' collected by Charles Robson in connection with proposed exhibition celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of N M Rothschild, 1977

000/464, 1 file

NMR: sundry 'historical papers' collected by Charles Robson in connection with proposed exhibition celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of N M Rothschild. Includes lists of key dates, and sundry photocopies of original documents. Charles Robson was clerk in the NMR Records Department, which at that time was responsible for the historic archives.

NMR Archives & Records Department: Company Corporate Records Management Manual, 1996

000/1406, 1 volume

NMR: Archives & Records Department, Company Corporate Records Management Manual: A Manual for the Regulation and Management of Company Records, December 1996. Issued to all NMR departments, this procedural manual describes how (largely paper) records are to be managed, stored and retrieved and includes information about retention scheduling.