This private bank was established in about 1801 as J S Godfrey, by John S Godfrey, a local attorney, previously agent to Smith, Ellison & Co, bankers of Lincoln. The firm was styled Welby, Godfrey & Lawrence in 1801, after Thomas Earle Welby, a banker of Grantham and Leicester, joined the partnership. The bank was known as Godfrey & Co from 1815; Godfrey, Hutton & Godfrey from 1826; and Godfrey & Hutton by 1846. The bank issued its own notes and the mainstay of its business was the accounts of several large maltsters and brewers.
In 1880, when known as Godfrey & Riddell, the bank was acquired by Samuel Smith & Co bankers of Nottingham, but continued to operate independently as Samuel Smith & Co until 1902. In 1902 it joined with the other Smith family banks in merging with Union Bank of London Ltd of London, to form Union of London & Smiths Bank Ltd.
Detailed list of name changes
- J S Godfrey from c.1801
- Welby & Co by 1806
- Welby, Godfrey, Lawrence & Handley in 1809
- Welby, Godfrey & Lawrence in 1810
- Godfrey & Co from 1815
- Godfrey, Hutton & Godfrey from 1826
- Godfrey & Hutton by 1846
- Godfrey & Riddell by 1880
Also known as Newark Bank.
- JASL Leighton-Boyce, Smiths the bankers 1658-1958 (London: privately published by National Provincial Bank, 1958)
Summary of our archive holdings
Our archival records of Samuel Smith & Co, Newark, have the reference code SSW.
- banknotes 1823-9, 1900
- cheque 19th cent.
- balance sheet 1902
Summary of archive holdings elsewhere
- Nottinghamshire Archives: Papers re partnership dispute 1802-8 (Ref: CP5/6133-222)