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Post World War II Immigration in Photographs
Image: Digital Photograph - Man Embarking Ship to Immigrate to Australia from Macedonia, 1964
Source: Museum Victoria
In the years after World War II, immigration changed the face of Victoria. In a drive to increase national security and post-war economic development, nearly three million immigrants arrived in Australia between 1945 and 1970, of whom almost a third disembarked in Melbourne. Amongst them were over 200,000 refugees. They came from countries as diverse as Italy, Greece and Latvia, although almost every second immigrant still came from Britain. Australia's immigration program became the second largest in the world, relative to its population (the largest being Israel).
The 1958 Migration Act finally removed references to race, opening the door to non-discriminatory immigration policy. However, non-European immigration to Australia remained limited until the passage of the Racial Discrimination Act in 1975.
At a time when inexpensive cameras were affordable to most, photographs provide an important record of these changing times: immigrants arriving in Melbourne, staying in migrant hostels, building their first home, celebrating family weddings and birthdays, children playing in the streets and family holidays by the beach. New suburbs are seen growing from bare fields, and old suburbs take on new appearances. Collectively, such photographs mark out the construction of life in a new country: new social networks, new places to live, key moments, and ways that ideals are fulfilled or challenged.
Items per page: 10 50 (showing 1 - 10) 17 items
Black and white photograph showing Michele Dominiewski and her friend Wally Gilinski with a peddle car, in Glenroy, 1960. Michele remembers: 'All the children in the street played tog ...From: Glenroy, Australia Images: 2
Colour photograph showing Alicia, Eduardo and Pablo Diaz in the Midway Migrant Hostel Maribyrnong, 1974. This was only a few months after they had emigrated from Chile to escape the pol ...From: Maribyrnong, Australia Images: 1
Colour photograph showing Pablo and Pamela Diaz, and Maureen and Alberto Poncell playing 'ring a ring a rosies' at the Poncell's house in Alphington. This photograph was taken for Maure ...From: Alphington, Australia Images: 1
Black and white photograph showing Ukraine migrant Ivan Kucan and his neighbour Mrs Malynko (first name unknown) in her Newport backyard smoking hams in 1968. According to the family, ...
Black and white photograph showing Ivan Kucan and friends in work gear, building a house in Newport, 1951. According to the family, in 1949 the Kucan family migrated to Australia as d ...
Black and white photograph showing Anna and Ivan Kucan and their daughters, Larysa and Marika, in the backyard of their family home in about 1957 on Ukrainian Christmas day, which is tr ...
Black and white photograph showing the Kucan family in front of their house, Newport, 1953. According to the Kucan family, in 1949 the Kucans migrated to Australia as displaced person ...From: Newport, Australia Images: 2
Black and white photograph showing men in the Mess Hall at Bonegilla Migrant Reception and Training Centre, 1950. This photograph documents the Kucan family history. In 1949 the Kucan ...From: Bonegilla, Australia Images: 1
Black and white photograph showing Ivan Kucan and friends in a passenger shelter on the platform at Flinders Street, Melbourne, 1951. According to Ivan's family, in 1949 the Kucan fam ...From: Melbourne, Australia Images: 2
Black and white photograph showing Ivan Kucan and friends on Princes Bridge, Melbourne, with Flinders Street Station in background, 1951. According to Ivan's family, in 1949 the Kucan ...From: Melbourne, Australia Images: 3