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Stuffed toy pig prize won by Erin Craig for having the reddest hair of children aboard SS Lurline, 1946

Object type
Toy pigs

Object number

Stuffed toy pig that has a red and off-white spotted cotton shell. The pig's left ear has been hand-stitched in place, and its right ear and tail are missing. The mouth is defined in chain-stitched black thread and the nose is roughly darned. The four legs and belly are hand-stitched. The legs have been repaired on the innermost side, and around the right side of its rear.

Collection name
Erin Craig collection

Collection statement of significance
The Erin Craig Collection consists of a red and white spotted cotton toy pig missing its tail and right ear. The toy pig belonged to Erin Craig the daughter of Australian war bride Iris Adams and James (Jim) Craig who was a Master Sergeant in the US Army during World War Two. Erin received the pig as a prize during her and her mother's voyage to the U.S. to meet her father in 1946. The collection also contains a debarkation tag which Erin wore on her arrival in San Fransisco in 1946.

Between 1942 and 1946 almost 1 million US servicemen were stationed in or visited Australia, although there was never over 200 000 at any one time. The social impact of the temporary migration in certain places, such as Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and some regional areas, was massive. US troops were initially seen as the saviours of Australia and the Australian public was encouraged to open their hearts to troops stationed or on leave in Australia. One consequence of this influx of American servicemen was that personal and romantic relationships were formed. In total around 12 000 - 15 000 Australian women married American GIs with about 10 000 leaving Australia for America.

Erin Craig

Associated person
Mrs Iris Craig

Associated person
Mr Jim Craig
Master Sergeant Jim Craig, US Army Signal Corps

Associated organisation
United States Army

Place of event
Pacific Ocean

Associated place
San Francisco, California, United States of America

Associated place
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Iris Adams met Jim Craig at a dance in Sydney in December 1942 and they married on 23 March 1943

Date of event
Won by ten month old Erin Craig for having the reddest hair of children aboard SS Lurline in 1946. She was migrating from Sydney to San Francisco with her mother to be with her American ex-serviceman father Jim

Associated period
1942 - 1946

Cotton cloth

Length: 270mm
Width: 60mm
Height: 160mm

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