You are here

The historical archives

The Banque de France's archives can be used for a range of historiographical approaches. They will interest researchers in monetary history, the history of economics on any geographical scale (global, national or regional) and international relations.

All the archive's documents refer to issues and decisions that obviously contribute to research in political sciences. They also trace the internal history of the Banque de France from a social, industrial and even organisational perspective. Lastly, the personal files, kept since the Banque de France's creation, will also fascinate biographers and genealogists. 
The Banque de France's historical archives include around 70,000 documents dating from 1800 to the present day. All the archives were deposited by the Bank's departments and services, with the exception of those of Maurice Apollinaire, Comte d’Argout and Governor from 1834 to 1836, which were purchased in 1993, and the private archives of Deputy Governor Rist, which were donated by his descendants in 2006. 
The Banque de France has also inherited archives from establishments that preceded it in Paris (Caisse des Comptes courants) and in the provinces (departmental banks) or from note-issuing institutions that operated alongside the Bank such as the Banque de Réescompte de la Sarre or the Institut d’émission des États associés. Finally, we should mention the private archives of Carl Schaeffer, the German Commissioner seconded to the Banque de France during the Occupation. 
In addition, more than 11,000 photographs, the majority of which concern the Bank's property (head office and branches), have been conserved and referenced in a database. 
Branch archives are conserved in the public storage network of the departmental archives. Nevertheless, the Archives Division conserves countless files with information on the branch network at the head office: the archives of earlier discount houses and departmental banks, branch creation files, counsellors' records, board minutes and inspection reports. 
Lastly, the Banque de France's historical library has a superb collection of around 50,000 works, all referenced in a database, which is unique in terms of banking history and economics. These books can only be consulted in the reading room, and will round off any visit to the archives. 

Updated on: 05/04/2018 15:03