The Barings Archives

The Barings Archives has an extensive collection of documents located primarily in the ING building in the City of London.  

The firm that became known as Baring Brothers was established in 1762, and it quickly became one of Great Britain’s most important firms in the financing of domestic and international trade.  As you may know, Barings became insolvent in 1995 as a result of unauthorised trading by one of its employees, Nick Leeson.  ING of the Netherlands acquired the majority of the business, and in 2004, MassMutual Financial Group bought the asset management arm. 

Today the Barings Archives continues as a charitable trust.  I joined its Board of Trustees earlier this year. 

The link below takes you to the Archives’ webpage.  Its archivists are in the process of digitising as much of the collection as possible, but the vast majority of the archive is not yet digitised. 

If you are doing research on international financial institutions and/or international trade, I encourage you to click on the link below and browse the collection:   

www.baringarchive.org.uk

Best regards,

Rowena

Dr. Rowena Olegario
Co-Director, Global History of Capitalism

Oxford Centre for Global History


M +44 (0)754 5419820

rowena.olegario@history.ox.ac.uk 

https://globalcapitalism.history.ox.ac.uk/

Barclays Group Archives & the BBC’s Gentleman Jack

I am always intrigued to read about the amazing things in corporate archives, and a while back I received another excellent newsletter from Barclays Group Archives. To my delight, one of the items dealt with the BBC’s Gentleman Jack, a fascinating show that fictionalized the Life & Loves of Anne Lister . It turns out, the archivists helped the production company recreate the historic setting of nineteenth century banking:

Readers may have been enthralled, as we were, by the recent BBC TV drama Gentleman Jack, based on the life and diaries of Anne Lister (1791-1840) of Shibden Hall, Halifax.

Early in 2018, we were contacted by a TV production company with a request for props and background information giving a picture of early 19th century country banking, especially in West Yorkshire. This led to a full day’s visit by the team’s graphic designer to see what we have.

Evidence for what a country bank would have looked like at that period is surprisingly scarce, but a humorous drawing by Jonathan Backhouse dated 1829 (below), of his manager’s  office  in a comparable banking house at Durham shows the simple furniture and likely layout. Items such as ledgers, coin scales, bank notes, cheques, fire buckets, and a clerk’s high desk were all useful as models for the props.

Humorous drawing by Jonathan Backhouse of his manager’s office, 1829

The ‘scheming banker’ of the TV series, Christopher Rawson, who becomes Anne’s arch-enemy, is not based directly (we hope) on one of our predecessors in Halifax.

Our main predecessor bank in the town was the Halifax Commercial Banking Co. which evolved from various partnerships, including Rawsons, Rhodes & Briggs. The banknotes used in the TV series borrowed designs from notes featuring a sheep issued by this bank, and a beehive from the Kendal Bank.”

Hagley Center Grants/Fellowships Announcement

by Carol Ressler Lockman

The Center for the History of Business, Technology, and Society, Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, Delaware is pleased to announce the recipients of grants and fellowships awarded July 25th, 2019. Please note that the next deadline for applications for the exploratory and Henry Belin du Pont Fellowship is October 31st. The H. B. du Pont Dissertation Fellowship deadline is November 15th. Here is the link on Hagley Museum and Library’s website to apply…. https://www.hagley.org/research/grants-fellowships.

Carol Ressler Lockman

Manager, Hagley Center

PO Box 3630

Wilmington DE 19807

Email:  clockman@hagley.org

302-658-2400, x243

Exploratory Grants:

Anthony Grasso

Assistant Professor

U.S. Military Academy

Privilege and Punishment: Class, Crime, and the Development of the American State

Louisa Iarocci

Associate Professor

University of Washington, Seattle

Bin, Bag, Box: The Architecture of Convenience

Andrew Wasserman

Visiting Assistant Professor

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

The Public Art of Public Relations: Creating the New American City

H. B. du Pont Fellowship

Trish Kahle

Post Doctoral Fellow

University of Chicago

The Graveyard Shift: Coal and Citizenship in an Age of Energy Crisis

Malwina Lys-Dobradin

Ph. D. Candidate

Columbia University

The Historical Trajectory of “Free Enterprise”

Sara Wermiel

Independent Researcher

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Railroad contractors and the rise of general contractors for buildings

Hagley Exploratory Research Grants

These grants support one-week visits by scholars who believe that their project will benefit from Hagley research collections, but need the opportunity to explore them on-site to determine if a Henry Belin du Pont Fellowship application is warranted. Priority will be given to junior scholars with innovative projects that seek to expand on existing scholarship. Applicants should reside more than 50 miles from Hagley, and the stipend is $400. Application deadlines: March 31, June 30 and October 31

Henry Belin du Pont Fellowships

These research grants enable scholars to pursue advanced research and study in the collections of the Hagley Library. They are awarded for the length of time needed to make use of Hagley collections for a specific project. The stipends are for a maximum of eight weeks and are pro-rated at $400/week for recipients who reside further than 50 miles from Hagley, and $200/week for those within 50 miles. Application deadlines: March 31, June 30 and October 31

Henry Belin du Pont Dissertation Fellowships

This fellowship is designed for graduate students who have completed all course work for the doctoral degree and are conducting research on their dissertation. Applications should demonstrate superior intellectual quality, present a persuasive methodology for the project, and show that there are significant research materials at Hagley pertinent to the dissertation. This is a residential fellowship with a term of four months. The fellowship provides $6,500, free housing on Hagley’s grounds, mail and internet access, and an office. Application deadline: November 15

Save the Thomas Cook Archive!

Please pass this on to anyone who has used, or who has an interest, in the Thomas Cook Archive!

You will have seen the news about the collapse of Thomas Cook and it is obviously a dreadful time for the staff and for holidaymakers caught up in all of this. Some of you will be aware that the company has a hugely important Archive covering over 170 years of the company’s existence. The Business Archives Council, through the Crisis Management Team for business archives, is coordinating a response to ensure that the Archive is secured for the future. To this end we need letters and statements of support from those who have used, or who have an interest, in the Thomas Cook Archive. Please contact me if you can help in making the case for the value and significance of these records and for the need for them to be properly maintained and made available to current and future users.

Thank you.

Mike Anson

ABH Archives Representative

michael.anson@bankofengland.co.uk

New book: Engineering Rules

Dear all

this post is on behalf of JoAnne Yates:

I’m happy to announce that Engineering Rules: Global Standard Setting Since 1880, by JoAnne Yates and Craig N. Murphy, is now available through Johns Hopkins University Press (it will be available on Amazon in early June). This book chronicles the engineers and organizations who have created the voluntary standards we depend on to make our world work. For a 20% discount, go to https://jhupbooks.press.jhu.edu/title/engineering-rules and use the code HTWN at checkout.

Best,

JoAnne

PDW report on Gender & History as an Analytical Lens

Gender and History as an Analytical Lens for Management and Entrepreneurship Research and Practice: Some thoughts from a PDW at the 2018 BAM conference

 

On the 4th September representatives from the Feminist Library (FL) in London, Gail Chester and Magda Oldziejewska, alongside Feminist Archive North’s (FAN) Jalna Hanmer, and academics from St Andrews, Aston, Birmingham and Stirling Universities, participated in a refreshingly non-strictly-academic workshop as part of the BAM 2018 conference at Bristol’s University of the West of England. The Library, along with FAN, introduced feminist libraries and archives (FLA) in the UK and talked about some of the unique practices of these organisations.

 

The FL, having been around since 1975, the height of the Women’s Liberation Movement, has since accumulated over 7,000 books, 1,500 periodical titles and countless items of archival material and ephemera, among them innumerable titles on women in education, feminist educational practices, women in management and business. FAN archive contains a wealth of contemporary material in local, regional, national and international collections donated by individuals and organisations, including conference papers, pamphlets, journals, newsletters, dissertations, oral history interviews, audio tapes, films, posters, badges, t-shirts and banners. However, far from these being like regular libraries and archives, the importance of understanding the FLA resources in the context of where they come from was highlighted, i.e. the feminist theories and practices key to the management and survival of these resources: collective working, intersectionality, diversity, and a focus on accessibility.

 

Alongside this compelling account of the construction and maintenance of the Feminist Library, including the contemporary challenges of archiving social media and of course the eternal funding challenges of this kind of work, workshop participants also addressed questions of how and why we conduct historical research with women and feminism at its centre. Organizer Hannah Dean (St Andrews) framed the workshop with an explanation of her British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship. Dr. Dean collected and archived women’s life history accounts of business ownership, creating an invaluable resource for her own research and for future scholars. Dr. Linda Perriton (Stirling) made clear why business historians need to ‘pick up the gauntlet’ that feminist historians have thrown down, and engage fully with the messy, marginal practices that are so fundamental to mainstream/malestream accounts of most business history.

 

Professor Stephanie Decker (Aston) followed this with a clear-sighted explanation of how archives can be approached as a site for fieldwork, as well as a source repository. Participants were encouraged again to take account of the nexus of power/knowledge that all history/History is embedded within. Finally, Dr. Scott Taylor (Birmingham) talked around the possibility of feminist methodologies for history, and what they mean for how we bear witness to the lives and activities of women in business history.

 

The stimulating resulting discussion focused on the importance of preserving/uncovering the lesser known/hidden voices of women, and at least one attendee was inspired to conduct her own research into this under-explored area, focusing on women’s work in Turkey in the middle ages.

 

All in all, it was heartening to be part of such an inspiring event that brought together historians, feminists, feminist allies, social scientists, archivists, and activists. Contemporary feminist activism and archivist practices have much to say to business and management research; historical analysis of women’s experiences and feminism even more so!

Article discussion: Reinventing entrepreneurial history

The NEP-HIS blog, had Nicholas Wong (Newcastle Business School) discuss a piece by Dan and Christina (my co-editors here at OHN):

Reinventing Entrepreneurial History

By R. Daniel Wadhwani (University of the Pacific, USA) and Christina Lubinski (Copenhagen Business School, Denmark)

Business History Review, 2017, 91 (4): 767-799

The executive editors of Business History Review have given free access to this article for a limited time.

Please find the review and link to the article here http://www.nephis.org

 

 

 

 

 

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New article on History Reframing Institutional Logics

 And we are happy to announce another great contribution to the ongoing debate on organizational history:

PRACTICE, SUBSTANCE AND HISTORY: REFRAMING INSTITUTIONAL LOGICS

  1. Alistair Mutch
    Nottingham Business School, Nottingham trent University, Nottingham, NG1 4BU, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  1. Correspondence: Alistair Mutch, Email: alistair.mutch@ntu.ac.uk

Abstract

The characterization by Roger Friedland of institutional logics as a combination of substance and practices opens the door to a more complex reading of their influence on organizational life. His focus suggests attention to feelings and belief as much as cognition and choice. This article uses history to develop these ideas by paying attention to the perennial features of our embodied relations with the world and other persons. Historical work draws our attention to neglected domains of social life, such as play, which can have profound impacts on organizations. The study of history suggests that such institutions have a long run conditioning influence that calls into question accounts that stress individual agential choice and action in bringing about change. Analytical narratives of the emergence of practices can provide the means to combine the conceptual apparatus of organization theory with the attention to temporality of history.

  • Received September 10, 2015.
  • Revision received May 9, 2017.
  • Accepted May 12, 2017.

New article on MOH

History Research in Management and Organization Studies

Editors’ Picks: History Research in Management and Organization Studies

Edited by Gabrielle Durepos and Albert J Mills

Introduction

This Editors’ Picks provides an occasion to celebrate the momentum that doing history research in management and organization studies (MOS) has gained since the calls for more history in the early 1990s (Zald, 1993, 1996; Kieser, 1994; Üsdiken and Kieser, 2004). Organization is an especially appropriate venue to do so given the dedication of the journal to disseminating critically oriented scholarship. The initial calls for more history work in MOS suggested, in varying ways (empirical, epistemological) and degrees, that doing history could act as a vehicle for critique. Indeed the articles selected for this Editors’ Picks are not only evidence of the growing momentum for more history in MOS but each in its own vein engenders history as a vehicle for critique. The theme is exemplified well by Cooke (1999) who provides a critical reconstruction of the Management of Change literature with a focus on redressing the silences surrounding the role of the ideological left in the disciplines’ own accounts of its past. In his assertion that all management and organization theory is shaped by past processes and are nonetheless viewed through a political lens formed by contemporary concerns, Cooke calls for greater awareness in the historical construction of representations of management and organization theory. Though Cooke (1999) does not use the terms ‘critical history,’ his article teaches us that a ‘critical history’ (as envisioned today) might imply acknowledging the historicity of management theory as a precondition for taking responsibility to change its (self- )representations that are uncontested, naturalized and un-reflexive.

To read the full introduction, please click here.