Western Australian Bank (Perth) 1899 One Pound Unissued Specimen Note MVR# 3c Uncirculated
Just eight different examples of this note have been seen at auction in Australia over the past 35 years.
The Western Australian Bank (WAB) was established under a deed of settlement in Perth on June 23rd 1841 by a small number of influential pastoralists and merchants in the Swan River Colony that were shareholders in the Bank of Western Australia (BWA).
The first directors of the WAB included George Shenton Senior and Edward Hamersley Senior.
These shareholders were dissatisfied with a majority decision by the BWA board to have the BWA’s operations absorbed into the Bank of Australasia, and so chose to establish the Western Australian Bank in competition with the Bank of Australasia.
The first Cashier of the WAB was Richard Wells, and as the the population of Perth was only 2,760 people in 1841, Wells was in fact the only staff member needed to conduct the bank's operations.
The first branch of the Western Australian Bank was located at the Eastern side of the intersection of St Georges Terrace and Pier Street - now the location of St Andrew’s (Uniting) Church.
The new WA Bank received strong support from local depositors, and was in fact so successful that it forced the withdrawal of the Bank of Australasia from the WA market in 1845.
The bank’s business was entirely based in WA, perhaps for this reason it was one of the very few banks in Australia that did not suspend during the 1893 financial crisis.
An article in the Argus newspaper in Melbourne announced on January 28th 1927 that the Western Australian Bank had been absorbed by the Bank of New South Wales for a sum of £1,900,000.
At that time, the WA bank had 84 branches and sub-branches in Western Australia.
Amalgamation with the Bank of New South Wales was complete by March 29th, 1927, bringing with it the end of a local institution “that had so long identified with the life and fortunes of this state.”
This particular note remains in excellent condition - the paper and colours are original, it is entirely devoid of any vertical bends.
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