National Bank of Australasia (Perth) Ten Pounds 1898 Unissued Specimen Note
MVR# 4p Uncirculated Serials: 002001 - 040000
This is a wonderful example of the highest denomination from this bank and domicile.
The National Bank of Australasia (NBA) was formed by a group of Melbourne businessmen in October 1857. The bank's stated aims were "...to financially assist merchants, traders, manufacturers, settlers, agriculturists and miners, as well as any other of the industrial classes."
Interestingly, the NBA opened it's first Perth branch in 1866, yet it did not open a branch in Sydney until 1885.
The notes of the NBA are among the most prolific in the entire Australian pre-federation note series, and feature some of the most attractive designs.
The notes of the NBA differ by state - while the designs remain largely the same regardless of which colony or state the note was issued in, each different state was identified not only by a notation of the domicile (either by the state or city of issue), but also by a different female figure personifying that state.
Although one online source states that "Western Australian notes show a more buxom female resting her arms on the head of an axe", it doesn't matter how many beers I have, I simply can't see the level of detail that author was referring to...
Like so many others, the NBA suspended trading following the land speculation boom and bust in 1893. Several mergers over the next century later, the NBA is now not only one of Australia's largest banks, but also one of it's largest companies.
The exponentially greater rarity of the proofs and specimens of the higher denominations is that they were printed far less frequently than those for the lower denominations. For example, a bank may issue a series of £1 notes 3 - 4 times each year from a particular domicile (town, city, state or region), whereas they may only issue one batch of a higher denomination such as a £10 once every 12 - 18 months.
This particular example remains in superb quality - it has crisp and natural paper, and is devoid of any flicks or folds.
It is an excellent example that is sure to stand the test of time.
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