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state library of queensland
John Oxley Library

Digitised @ SLQ - Go home and have babies

By C. Cottle, Specialist Librarian, State Library of Queensland | 11 June 2015

Recently digitised @ SLQ,  women who lived at Queensland's Wacol Immigrants Holding Camp tell their stories  in OH24 Migrant Women Oral History.  While at the camp in 1955,  Christa Braun describes the bedroom during her stay.  Her room had two camp beds (one for herself and one for her husband), and a cot for her baby daughter. There was also a small (and unstable) square table (which Christa compares to a card-table), and which her husband nailed to the floor to prevent it from falling over. Christa says on the day that her husband 'unofficially' moved out of the camp, the supervisor came and took the second camp bed from her room. They both slept on the single camp bed after that. The supervisor bothered them quite a lot about Christa's husbands' illegal residence at the camp.

However, in the oral history interviews, conducted in the 1990s by Dr. Donna Kleiss, many of the women noted that it was suggested that their primary duty was to get pregnant.

Migrant children in Queensland, ca 1955


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