board of management with Sarphati as president and A.C. Wertheim as general manager. The latter would also continue his partnership with Wertheim & Gompertz. One year later Benedict Jacobsen23 was appointed as the second general manager. The Supervisory board counted nine members. Three of them were French: Louis-Raphaël Bischoffsheim, Edouard Hentsch24 and Alphonse Pinard25. The six Dutch members were leading Amsterdam people active in political life or connected with the Nationale Hypotheekbank and the Credietvereeniging.
Although the larger part of the capital was in foreign hands, the management and supervision of the new bank were clearly controlled by the Dutch. It is also clear that the NCDB was neither a branch of Bischoffsheim Paris, nor did it take over from the outset the Bischoffsheim s banking activities in Amsterdam and Antwerp 26. If this had been the case, it would certainly have been published in the prospectus or in the first annual report. Louis-Raphaël Bischoffsheim s bank in Amsterdam was, in all probability, already closed before 1863, and the Antwerp branch was only acquired by NCDB in 1871.
In a biographical note on Louis Bamberger, the author Erich Achterberg suggests that in 1864 Louis-Raphaël Bischoffsheim wanted to start a joint stock bank as a successor to his own banking house. According to the author, it seemed practically impossible to obtain an authorization in France. As a result, Louis Bamberger was supposed to have received the instruction to establish a bank with a head office in Amsterdam and a branch in Paris27. However, NCDB had already been established in 1863, and there is no indication that Louis Bamberger was personally involved. In his own memoirs he does not make any reference whatsoever to the NCDB project28. Finally, in 1864 the Société Générale was founded in Paris with the direct involvement of Louis-Raphaël Bischoffsheim. Achterberg and other authors describe the NCDB as a French bank established in the Netherlands. The later development of NCDB into a more French orientated institution probably influenced this interpretation, which is obviously incorrect29.
23. Probably Benedict Moritz Jacobsen (1833-1898), related to the Goldschmidts through his mother Rebekka and his sister Pauline who married a cousin, Benedict Moritz Goldschmidt. See A. Allfrey, The Goldschmidts, (London, 2004).
24. Edouard Hentsch (1829-1892) was the son of a Protestant banker from Geneva. He took part in the creation of the NCDB as well as of the Société Générale, the Banque de Paris et des Pays-Bas and the Banque de l Indochine in Paris. As chairman of the Comptoir National d Escompte de Paris he contributed to its development during the 1870s. As a consequence of his involvement in the Comptoir s collapse in 1889, he was ruined and died in 1892. Nicolas Stoskopf, Les patrons du Second Empire. Banquiers et financiers parisiens, (Paris, 2002) ; Robert Hentsch, Hentsch, Banquiers à Paris au XIXe siècle, (1996) and Robert Hentsch, De mère en fille. Histoire des familles Hoskier, Appert, Girod, Hentsch, (1997).
25. Alphonse Pinard (1815-1871) was seen as one of the best bankers of his time. He was among the founders of the Comptoir National d Escompte de Paris (CNEP), of the Crédit foncier colonial and of the Société Générale in 1863. As head of the CNEP, he proved astute and clever in finance. Nicolas Stoskopf, Les patrons du Second Empire. Banquiers et financiers parisiens, (Paris, 2002).
26. E. Bussière, Paribas, Europe and the World, 1872- 1992, pp. 21 et 39 ; Nicolas Stoskopf, Les patrons du Second Empire. Banquiers et financiers parisiens, (Paris, 2002).
27. E. Achterberg, Lebensbilder, p. 208, shares view of Emden, Money Powers, pp. 163 et 218, who dates the foundation of this Amsterdam bank in 1862.
28. L. Bamberger, Erinnerungen (Berlin, 1899).
29. L. Bergeron, Les Rothschild et les autres. La gloire des banquiers, (Paris, 1991), p. 93, wrongly ascribes that Delahante and Cernuschi played a role in the management of the NCDB. The remark that cette banque était liée à la haute finance belge et hollandaise » ( this bank was related to Belgian and Dutch private bankers ), p. 55, is also incorrect. In any case, in the Netherlands, the NCDB was completely independent.
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