FOR THE BENEFIT OF
Mrs. Ashton begs most respectfully to apprise the Ladies and Gentlemen of Launceston and its environs, that she will take a Benefit at the above place of amusement on Monday evening next, April 11th, on which occasion she solicits your kind patronage and support ; and she pledges herself that no expence shall be spared to render the performance as attractive and novel, as the resources at command will allow.
Ladies of Launceston your favor I sue,
For next Monday evening when I make my debut
As the first female equestrian who’s appear’ d in the land.
And your kind patronage that night I command;
I will no other favor ask, nor some other court
And acknowledge, with gratitude, your aid and support.
Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston), 9 April 1851
Mary was the wife of James Henry, founder of Ashton’s Circus, although it is from his next wife that the circus family is descended. Mary died a little over a year after her performance above, aged 19. There is a memorial in Hanging Rock, NSW, where she is buried.