1850 - 1880 :
From 1850 the family began to use its
newly found wealth.
Great art collections began to grow.
Great houses were built in the 1850s - Mentmore in England and
Ferrières in France - the first of many to follow across Europe. All were
filled with works of art.
The Bordeaux vineyards of Mouton and Lafite were acquired.
Charitable foundations were established with increasing pace.
The family were caught up in the political storms of the mid-century.
The Year of Revolutions, 1848, left them largely unmoved, but the
Unification of Italy in 1861 eventually brought about the closure of their
Meanwhile the business of bond issues grew and spread.
And still there were great moments, like the decisively swift and
secret raising of finance by Lionel de Rothschild in 1875 to enable the
British government to acquire a major interest in the Suez Canal.
With the death of Baron James in 1868 the first generation of
Rothschild bankers came to an end.
Despite increasing identification with the countries in which they now
lived - England, France, Germany and Austria - the family links remained
firm, strengthened by binding partnership agreements.