Ann Hasseltine was born in Bradford, Massachusetts (in the same year the young United States began its government under the Constitution) 1789. When she was a teenager Ann accepted Christ as her Savior and began to spend time in Bible study and prayer.
She wanted to serve God and prayed: “Direct me in Thy service, and I ask no more. I would not choose my position of work, or place of labor. Only let me know Thy will, and I will readily comply.”
By 1810, when she was 21, Ann wanted to become a missionary to foreign lands. So did the Congregational minister named Adoniram Judson that she married on February 5, 1812; the next day, the newlyweds sailed from Salem, Massachusetts for Calcutta, India.
The government in India and the East India Company were then opposed to missions, and they were soon ordered to leave the country. So the Judsons began their missionary work in Burma, to which 15 million people, the gospel had not yet reached. Ann prayed: “O thou Light of the world, dissipate the thick darkness which covers Burma, and let thy light arise and shine. O display thy grace and power among the Burmese. Subdue them to thyself, and make them thy chosen people.”
The Burmese never heard of an eternal God, without beginning or end, and it was difficult to find words to accurately describe the Christian God and His truths. Nevertheless, within three years the Judsons had prepared a Burmese grammar, printed two tracts, and translated the gospel of Matthew. Ann formed a society of local women who met together on Sundays to pray and read the Scriptures.
While in America in 1822, Ann wrote a history of the Burma mission, and awakened many to the conditions of the Burmese women and the importance of female missionaries working among them.
When war did break out between Burma and Britain, the Burmese thought the Americans were associates of the British, and Adoniram was thrown into death prison. Ann, then two months pregnant, became a prisoner in the inner room of her own house. She was however secretly able to bring supplies and food to Adoniram and his fellow prisoners. When he was transferred to another prison, she followed and stayed with the jailer and his family. She later became seriously ill herself from both smallpox and spotted fever.
When Burma and the British made peace, Adoniram was released and united with his wife and infant daughter. Ann, however, was still weak. She died of a fever on October 24, 1826. Her daughter died within six months.
After twenty-four years her husband completed a translation of the entire Bible into Burmese. By the time of his death in 1850, Burma had sixty-three churches with 163 missionaries and native church leaders.
excerpts quoted from the following link: http://www.christianity.com/church/church-history/timeline/1801-1900/ann-judson-1st-american-woman-missionary-11630365.html
further reading recommended: