History-making gay couple’s wedding suits donated to Queensland Museum

craig burns luke sullivan wedding photo instagram
Photo: Craig Burns/Instagram

A Queensland same-sex couple who made history by tying the knot last January will have their suits and memorabilia immortalised in the Queensland Museum’s collection.

Craig Burns and Luke Sullivan are believed to be the first same-sex couple to tie the knot in Queensland on the first official day of legal same-sex marriages last year, just minutes after midnight on January 9.

The couple, who are both athletes, wed at an intimate service in front of around 50 friends in northern New South Wales.

Now the pair have donated their two wedding suits and other items from the ceremony including bow ties, guest place cards and their wedding certificate to the Queensland Museum.

Sullivan told the Brisbane Times he realised just how historic their wedding once the museum contacted them about donating the memorabilia.

“We realised, ‘Whoa, we’re going to be in the museum, people will see our story and who we were, that’s really special, not a lot of people get to do that,’ ” he said.

Sullivan said the pair had gotten engaged on the beach in Byron Bay in 2016, without any indication marriage would shortly be legal.

In the lead-up to the wedding, the couple were approached by a wedding planner friend who suggested they make their marriage a historic occasion with the late-night vows.

“The celebrant and the wedding planner did a lot of the legwork and we got to just rock up and enjoy this fantastic night,” he said.

The Queensland Museum’s social history curator Judith Hickson said they were grateful to the couple for their donation, which represented a historic milestone.

The items will be immortalised in the museum’s collection of wedding garments and items, which contains historical artifacts stretching all the way back to the 1700s.

“We’re collecting it for future generations to look back and reflect on what was going on at this particular place and time,” Hickson told the Brisbane Times.

“Men’s outfits are really interesting to us, because lots of women save their wedding dresses, but many men just hire their suits.

“We want to encourage people who maybe wouldn’t ordinarily come to the museum to know that they are valued and their stories are valued.”

The couple’s suits will be worked on by a conservation team at the museum, and are expected to be displayed next year.

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