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The Royal Mint Refinery, a Window onto the London Gold Market - Michele Blagg, King’s College London

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Tim Green, in his recent publication ‘The London Good Delivery List: Building a Global Brand’ (2010), provided a detailed account of the expansion of the London refining industry following the ‘gold rushes’ that took place from the mid-19th century and resulted in many new refining houses and brokerages being established in London. Inspired by Tim’s research, Dr Michele Blagg built on these accounts for her own research. Here she presents a précis of her doctorial study into a bullion refining facility, the Royal Mint Refinery, operated by N M Rothschild & Sons between 1852-1967. The study, which focused on the interaction between Rothschild and the London gold market, reveals much about the significant players in the industry and contributes to the wider understanding of the current renaissance for gold.

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Michele Blagg (BA(hons), MA, PhD) is a visiting Research Associate at the Institute Of Contemporary British History (ICBH). 
As part of a collaborative doctoral award granted by the Art’s and Humanities Research Council, she was based at the Rothschild Archive, London. Her doctoral research focused on the Royal Mint Refinery, operated by N M Rothschild & Sons between 1852 and 1968, and how it adapted to the changed London gold market. Her areas of interest are in financial and business history with special regard for the actors and networks located in the London market. Her publications include ‘Gold Refining in London: The End of the Rainbow, 1919-20’ in The Global Gold Market and the International Monetary system from the late 19th century to the present (forthcoming, 2013); ‘The Royal Mint Refinery, a business adapting to change’ in Business Archives Council, Sources and History. She teaches on the ICBH MA in Contemporary British History and assists with the Witness Seminar Programme. She sits on the Business Archives Council Executive and is involved in the annual ‘Meet the Archivists’ workshop held in the City that aims to explore ways in which research students can identify and use business records in a variety of different research fields.

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