The Pygmy Princess: Scary Archive Footage of Tribal Australia, South Pacific Island 1930s

I'm utterly spellbound by this clip of a so-called "Pigmy Princess" (Pygmy Princess) from Australia in 1937. I'm not sure if the little lady in the clip is actually a pigmy, but she's very strange. I'm sure you'll agree that the way she dances and acts with her eyes has a certain level of professionalism to it. I wonder if she's actually a contrived act to impress tourists as opposed to a bizarre tribal spectacle. The narrator is great when he says that she picks up where Mae West leaves off too! Watch the clip yourself here and let me know what you think -


It would be great to find out more about the Pigmy Princess. Does she have family living in South Pacific Island still? When Goolging 'Pygmy Princess' I found some expired links and references that suggested Butlins, the mega-low-budget British holiday camp company, had dancing Pigmy shows. Perhaps this woman is one of those performers? The best part of this video is the wild cackling. Definitely one to post on your friends Facebook wall!


  1. This is "Princess Ubangi", a sideshow performer imported to Australia in 1927 by Tas Bradley. She then toured UK from 1932 - 1933 before returning to Australia in the employ of David Meekin, and applying for naturalisation in 1966, when she bcame known as Maria Peters. Maria lived on the Gold Coast, Queensland until she passed away in the mid 1980's.