Australia has a long history of female publicans, that is owners and or licencees of hotels where there will at least be a bar for drinking and meals available. In days of old such hotels normally offered accommodation too.
It was one business where a woman was respected as an owner or licensee, but perhaps not her female staff, although female bar staff usually knew how to look after themselves. My step mother was a barmaid for some of her working life and she knew how to look after herself. Actually, I take that back. Your average bloke pub drinker could go too far when he had taken a good drink, but generally barmaids were respected and if one man went out of line, others would pull him back if he was harassing the barmaid.
My father in his young days drank at the Notting Hill Hotel and here is a great tribute to the woman licensee, Kath Byer.
All history. No female publicans around now....or are there. One hotel we have been going to for years in run by the sister of a former Premier of Victoria. I know her well enough but someone else told me of her brother connection.
Another we have been going to for a number of years took some of my personals observation to work out. Who was this a bit drunk woman berating bar staff behind the bar? Later I saw her sitting in a comfortable hotel chair sipping a Scotch as she read a book.
I've seen her a couple of times since with a glass of beer and reading her book. I guess she lives in an apartment in the upper level of the hotel.
She was in the bar during our last hotel visit. To one of her Indian born employees with her stern face set, she clicked her fingers, as if to say, boy, do this. I then saw her circulating among diners she knew. We are normally there on a Friday or Saturday night, not a Tuesday and I have not seen her circulate among diners before.
But then as we were leaving, I saw her talking to the aforesaid Indian lad who she had earlier clicked her fingers to, laughing and with her hand on his shoulder.
Nowt as queer as folk and what is better than emancipated female publicans who made it in a world of blokes.