Black and White photograph of two Leo Sterne Company dolls on the back of the written in grey led 'First Stern Dolls.'

Description of Content

Two dolls are depicted in the photograph. One is wearing a spotted dress and matching hat the other smaller doll is wearing a dress (possibly a traditional dirndl Austrian/German/Bavarian dress). Both dolls appear to have black shoes made out of soft material and cannot be removed. The dolls seem to be standing on grass with a shrub behind them and both appear to have moulded hair and painted eyes and lips.

Physical Description

Black & White photograph with a straight edge.


This item is part of a growing collection of material relating to the migration and settlement experiences of Leo and Hilda Sterne who arrived in Melbourne in 1939. They immediately established a business that became one of the most successful doll and toy manufactures in post-war Melbourne.
The L.J. Sterne Doll Company (1939-71) is significant as one of the few surviving collections related to an Australian toy and doll manufacturer, a once thriving industry in Australia. Only the A.L. Lindsay and Co. archive at the Powerhouse Museum and the Jakas Toys collection at Museum Victoria are comparable.
This collection of photographs, business and promotional documents, dolls, and toys enables the exploration of many Australian post-war historical and social themes including: local television and manufacturing industries; design and production innovation; marketing and merchandising; childhood; gender and cultural representations; leisure and sport; and key cultural and historical events.

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