Most obituaries about business women focus on their activities after the death of the husband. This one talks about her involvement in the business alongside him.

ANOTHER old colonist was yesterday removed by death in the person of Mrs Mary Ann Spearman, of Landale-street, Invermay. The deceased lady was the widow of the late Mr William Spearman, well-known in Launceston as a coach proprietor and hotelkeeper. Mrs Spearman, who was 77 years of age, arrived in the colony 55 years ago, and after her marriage she assisted her husband with marked ability in his various avocations. It was principally owing to her, business tact and shrewdness as a manageress that Mr. Spearman realised a competency. For many years Spearman’s coaches were run regularly between Launceston and Deloraine, and it was not until the Western railway line was opened that they were discontinued.

About 16 years ago Mr Spearman conducted the first livery and bait business in this city, the stables being situated on the site of the present Launceston Club, Brisbane-street. Subsequently he was licensee of the Union Hotel, in George street, now known as the Royal Exchange, the Royal Mail Hotel, on the premises now occupied by Mr G. T. Easter as a carriage works, and the Duke of Wellington Inn, Wellington road, where he died in 1870. The late Mrs Spearman in all the foregoing businesses, besides having control of the housekeeping, acted as bookkeeper, which was no slight tax on her energy and time in concerns in which large transactions were daily recorded. After the demise of her husband Mrs Spearman was the landlady of the Racecourse Hotel  at Mowbray, from which she retired into private life some time back. The deceased, who was a sister of Mr Wm. Job Harris, of Hampden, leaves a family of six, Mrs J. T. Smith, Mrs Carling, Mrs Clear, and Messrs Wm, Henry, and Walter Spearman,  all of whom reside in Launceston. The funeral will take place at 3 30 p.m. tomorrow.

Launceston Examiner, 25 August 1892 & The Tasmanian, 27 August 1892


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