Convict Ann Mash is an inspiration to today’s female entrepreneurs who strive to succeed in the business community while juggling serious family commitments.
Ann Mash was a convict, and at the age of 31 was sentenced in 1789 to seven years in the penal colony of New South Wales. A multi-tasker, she was a wife three times-over and gave birth to thirteen children.
She also showed huge entrepreneurial and business skills. Ann was literate and articulate and amongst other business enterprises became involved in a bakery, a butcher, a general store and a small goods and passenger boat service from Parramatta to Sydney. She also held a wine and spirit licence for the King’s Head Tavern. Her well-written signature exists on documents with the early Bank of New South Wales, which started trading in 1817.
This great historical piece, issued circa 1812, is unique. It is the only known surviving promissory note issued by a woman, Ann Mash. Furthermore it is the only known promissory note issued in this denomination.
The Ann Mash Promissory Note is listed in the ‘Confirmed Private Note Issuers’ listing found in Dr W. J. D. Mira’s publication, ‘Coinage & Currency in NSW 1788-1829’.