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Staff memoirs and souvenirs

Personal memoirs written by Rothschild staff. These papers were not created by the business, but are listed here for convenience. Also included are some humorous items believed to have been created by the New Court clerks during their time in the office.

Staff memoirs: Mr Elton, NMR, 'The Best Club in London', 1964

000/921, 1 file

Typescript of a personal memoir of life at New Court, by NMR clerk, Mr. Elton, The Best Club in London featuring pen portraits of NMR staff and anecdotes, covering the period c.1925-1964.

Staff memoirs: Mr Palin, NMR, 'Rothschild Relish', 1970

000/2716, 2 volumes

Two copies of the personal memoir 'Rothschild Relish', Ronald Palin, (Cassell, London, 1970). Ronald Palin joined N M Rothschild & Sons in 1925, eventually rising to the position of Company Secretary of the Bank. He recalls his time with the firm in Rothschild Relish, an affectionate portrait of the unique world of New Court, c.1925-1970. His recollections include those of his own career, together with anecdotes of earlier years gathered from older colleagues, and form a useful source in explaining the interrelation of the Bank's departments at the time of the compilation of the Old Catalogue. In fact it is clear that most of the departments were mere divisions of the General Office. The year 1970 also marked an important change in the way the business was run; on September 30th 1970, the London house ceased to be a partnership and became a limited company. The firm was the last London accepting house to relinquish its private partnership status.

Staff memoirs: Mr Jones, NMR, 'My Life Story - Paul Jones', 2015

000/2424, 1 item

My Life Story - Paul Jones. A privately published account of the life of Paul Jones. Paul Elliott Jones (1925-2016) studied to become an RAF pilot  before resuming his place at Cambridge. Paul began his career at Rothschild in 1950, working in the Dividend Office, Private Clients Department, the General Manager's Office, Private Accounts Department and Credits in New Court before moving to Manchester, being made the manager of the new office which opened there in 1964. In 1970 Paul was requested to visit Singapore to investigate the feasibility of opening an office there. He was made a director in 1972 and  moved back to New Court in 1977, becoming the Personnel Director and Head of the Administration Division, retiring in 1985 after 35 years with the company. In 2015 Paul's children suggested that he wrote some memoirs, and the volume recalls his career at Rothschild, including memories of New Court and Manchester.

Staff memoirs: Mr Hunt, Royal Mint Refinery, 1994

000/1312, 1 folder

Staff memoirs: correspondence between Spencer Richards and Godfrey Hunt, concerning Mr Hunt's memories of his father's work at the Royal Mint Refinery and air raids there during the Second World War.

Staff souvenirs: ‘The New Court Spring Cup’, c.1910

000/289/8, 1 item

Typewritten list, The New Court Spring Cup, a humorous list of New Court clerks staff described as horses, ascribing the characteristics of racehorses to the personalities of various members of staff. All the staff so described are male clerks. [Note: The list is pasted onto the reverse of a mounted photograph captioned the ‘Pelican Club Picnic, Glynde Park, Brighton, August 1st 1891’; it is not known what the Pelican Club was; it may be unrelated to New Court and simply used as a board upon which to append the list for display in the office].

Staff souvenirs: 'Baron Rothschild's Maxims', 1911

000/1249/1, 1 item

Hand-written and hand-coloured mounted list, Baron Rothschild's Maxims, framed and hung in the Bank, recommended to young men who wished to get on. The document, in an amateur hand, is a list of humorous good advice, written in the style of an acrostic poem, in which the first letter of each line spells out the alphabet, going down the page. A transcript may be read here » 

The provence of the document is not known. It is dated '9 September 1911, Frinton-on-Sea' and also marked 'Pat's future'. It was probably the work of clerks of the London bank, rather than Nathaniel, 1st Lord Rothschild (1840-1915), who was then Senior Partner, N M Rothschild & Sons. It may have been sent to a clerk at New Court, or made to celebrate the employment of a new young recruit to the firm. The document was in the possession of Mr Edmund de Rothschild, and it took a prominent place in his office at New Court.

Staff souvenirs, caricature, 'NMR Staff', 1954

000/429/6, 1 item

Original artwork featuring caricatures of twelve members of N M Rothschild & Sons' staff, captioned on reverse Lovering, Tring ‘54. Staff of NMR had been evacuated to Tring during the war, using the former Rothschild mansion and estate cottages  at Tring Park, which was leased to the firm by Victor, 3rd Lord Rothschild (1910-1990). It is possible that staff were still located in Tring in 1954. 'Lovering' may have been Cecil [Downing] Lovering (1885-1962), a gifted amateur artist and Rothschild clerk who also painted portraits of Lionel de Rothschild (1882-1942) and Edmund de Rothschild (1916-2009); these can be found in the Archive collection.

Staff souvenirs: 'home movie' of New Court, c.1960

000/650, 1 VHS cassette

Personal home movie footage from an ex-N M Rothschild & Sons employee with very brief footage of New Court on 'moving day', 1960.