Immigrant Stories

Immigration is about us all - those who were here and those who came.

Settling into a new country is not easy. Immigrants have to adapt to an unfamiliar environment and lifestyle, while maintaining aspects of their previous culture and way of life.

Many newcomers spent their new lives in limbo, spending months in temporary migrant accommodation, committed to two year labour contracts. For others, settlement has been far easier because they spoke English, or government had offered assistant land or home scheme.

Generations of immigrants have had to adapt to a new climate, new landscape, new language, new currency, and new lifestyle, especially those who have settled in rural areas.

Each immigrant has their own unique story to tell. Whilst for many it was difficult, the vast majority eventually found their feet.

This resource explores why they came, where they settled and how they started a new life in Victoria.


Jose Alonso and Gaston Arias Munoz

Two men, born in the same year, on the same continent, speaking the same language. Two men who left the political turmoil of their beloved homelands to migrate to Australia. Yet their experiences could not be more different.

Masumi Jackson thumbnail

Masumi Jackson

Alone in a new country in 1987, Masumi had a critical decision to make — stay in Melbourne or return home to Japan.



Karl Muffler

Karl Friedrich Muffler was born in 1900 in south-west Germany. As a teenager, he decided to pursue a career in confectionery craft. Karl worked for several firms in Germany, then travelled as a confectioner on a Spanish passenger liner.

Eid Brothers

Youssef, Romanos and Tansa Eid

The Eid brothers migrated from Lebanon and established taxi businesses in the early 1970s. Handling ‘the good, the bad and the ugly’ in the back seat became a way of life.