Sharing the Lode: The Broken Hill Migrant Story

I sailed from Genoa on the "Sydney". - Jagoda Vlatko

The Journey

We travelled by truck, train, ship and aeroplane to reach this country. Often the trip was long and uncomfortable. We were apprehensive about the new life that awaited us.

We left on the "Orsova" on the 22nd of May, 1961. The trip out wasn't very easy. The first few days were really sad, because we left our family. It was an English ship so we couldn't talk to anybody because we didn't know the language.
Marija Zaknich

I can remember my grandmother dressed in black, waving her hanky at us.
Anna Murphy

I left Messina, Italy at the end of July on the "Toscana". The trip was rough and slow. The food was alright but because it was so rough, no sooner was it taken in than it came out! The ship took forty days to reach Melbourne.
Giuseppe (Joe) Franze

On Dad's journey out to Australia, the ship broke its tail shaft and stayed in Ceylon (Sri Lanka) for a couple of months. Dad remembered going into the forests of Ceylon eating big snails. These were two or three inches in diameter and that's what they lived on.
Louis (Lou) Forner

I paid for my own fare. When you have no money, you take the best you can afford. I slept in a hammock — there were fifty to a room.
Luigi Zanette

There was not really any sadness when I left my country for Australia. I was happy to come here because I knew I was beginning a new life: starting again, and I would meet my father.
Ivan Vlatko

I sailed on the Greek ship "Tasmania". There were five hundred men and two thousand girls! I had a fantastic time and I didn't want the trip to end.
Spiros Niarros

We were all together. There were two or three hundred people in one large room: pregnant women, babies, boys, girls. I think it was a magazine room — there were no cabins, just bunks. The smell was dreadful.
Silvana Michl

I sailed on a German ship the "Fair Sea", and celebrated my twenty first birthday on the boat. There were five hundred Italian men on the ship, from twenty one to thirty years of age, no younger or no older. There was not one Italian family or Italian female on board.
Dino De Franceschi

One night water was coming to the level of the window and it was like mud. The ship was swaying and I said, "We'll drown tonight!" The children were sleeping; it didn't worry them but I went into the passage and prayed the fifth mystery of the Rosary so that the ship would not sink!
Olga Zanette

I came out on an English ship, the "Orion". I enjoyed going to the lounge after dinner to watch the dancing. People came and asked me to dance but I was too shy. I remembered my father's words. "Don't trust anyone; don't have a drink and don't get too excited dancing, because if anything happens I will jump in the river."
Vasiliki (Vickie) Niarros

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Michelina Zahra in centre of Maltese migrants on the "Columbia" in the 1950s

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I sailed from Genoa on the "Sydney" - Jagoda Vlatko

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There was not really any sadness when I left my country for Australia. I was happy to come here because I knew...

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Charlie told me that when they left Malta, they had so much bad weather between Malta and France, they almost drowned three times...

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Broken Hill Migrant Museum exhibit including list of male passengers that arrived in Fremantle on the 'Caprera' on the...