Welcome Wall - Personal Stories

We love to hear your stories and experiences.  Feel free to comment on the welcome wall project or your experiences as an immigrant to Australia.

I took marine course in 2001 and this was my very first course. Well, I did not like it that is why I took another and I am now a psychology student.

May 9, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMunzilla

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March 7, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersubalashi

I have records of my norwegian great grandfather Claus Clausen, who 'jumped ship' at Newcastle back around 15 June 1901 on the ship called 'Alastair' (I think) I have his naturalisation certificate with this info on it but the old cursive writing for the ships name is hard to determine. I can attach it to you in a later email. I am hoping that you have records for his stay at the sailors home around that time. He was born in 1882 in Bergen Norway so he was 19 years old at this time. The records on his naturalisation papers (6.5 years later when his first child is born) shows he did an 18 month apprenticeship in Newcastle (of what I don't know, maybe your records can help, he had an address where he lived in Hamilton for 18 months, then he and his fellow AWOL sailor friend walked to Sydney along the historical great northern road.

He landed a job on the sydney waterfront where he spent his working life on the docks, and my great aunt (his granddaughter) recently sent me a record of a ships log from Sydney to NZ that scattered his ashes out to sea as per his request. His love of the sea remained throughout his whole life. In a way, the sea became his mother, having lost his own mother at the tender age of 12, and the sea gave him an escape from his poverty and hardship and gave him a skill and an education and a trade. I admire his devotion, and his love of the sea passes right down to me, his great granddaughter. I am hoping that you will be able to provide any other information that you might have on hand to fill in the gaps of his journey as I am writing a book about his life and I would also like to ask if you know the contact I would follow up with in finding out the work he did on the sydney docks. If you have any information about the destination and ports of call that his ship made. the cargo it was carrying from Norway and europe and the cargo they would be collecting from Australian ports, anything at all no matter how minor. I have done some lateral research at the Stavanger Maritime Museum here in Norway so I have a general indication that they would be bringing sardines from Norway and collecting wool and tea from Australia (or maybe the tea was from china). I have gathered information from Norway and even UK census where his boat was docked at Folkestone, Kent on the March 31 1901 census night and therefore recorded on the UK census night, so its probable that this was the very same voyage that took him to Australia, as the time difference is only 2.5 months from the census night in Kent, to his arrival in Newcastle OZ, on 15 June 1901 arrival in Newcastle. I thought he sailed on schooners but my great aunt says that HE said he sailed around the world on windjammers.

I really respect the volunteers who give their time and efforts in researching. That is something I look forward to doing later on down the track. I am a geneologist so I have a lot of knowledge and skills to share also.

October 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLisa Lipman

I am researching the life and times of James Johnson, the sole survivor of the wreck of the Dunbar (1857) and, while employed as lighthouse keeper at Nobby's, the rescuer of the sole survivor of the wreck of the Cawarra (1866). I'm looking for any information on Johnson from local historians or maritime enthusiasts - anecdotes, official/unofficial records, etc. prea@swiftdsl.com.au

August 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Rea

Hi my name is craig i am after information on my grand father archibald wilson in witch he was the captain of the koondaloo (the old punts).
My grand father was presented with the brass bell off the koondaloo........

April 25, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercraig wilson

I am submitting my late parents who ventured out here as immigrants with me & my 2 brothers on the SS "New Australia" in 1956. I did my apprenticeship at the State Dockyard & went to sea as an engineer in 1966. My brothers still reside here at Teralba & Stockton.

November 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBill Stringer

I HAVE ALSO SUBMITTED MY GRANDPARENTS, LEON AND KATHARINA LEWKOWITZ WHO CAME TO NEWCASTLE ON THE SS ROMA IN DECEMBER 1950. MY MUM AND DAD, IWAN AND ROSALIA PYLYPEC AND MYSELF CAME IN AUGUST 1949 TO NEWCASTLE ON THE SS FAIRSEA. WE LIVED AT GRETA CAMP UNTIL MY PARENTS FOUND A PLACE IN WALLSEND, WERE THEY STILL LIVE. MUM TOLD ME OF THE TERRIBLE TRIP OVER ON THE FAIRSEA. AS SHE WAS SO YOUNG WITH A LITTLE BABY TO FEED. THE CRAMPED QUARTERS AND NO MILK FOR ME. ONLY TEA. NO WONDER I LOVE TEA SO MUCH.TIMES WERE TOUGH BUT WE ARE SO GREATFUL TO BE IN AUSTRALIA.MY GRANDPARENTS DIED WHEN I WAS ABOUT 9 YRS OLD. BUT MUM AND DAD ARE STILL GOING STRONG. THEY HAVE TWO GRANDSONS, DEAN AND STEPHAN, AND TWO GREAT GRANDCHILDREN, SIENNA AND VINCENT.

October 5, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKATHY CURRAN

I have submitted my family name, I was 4 when I arrived in Newcastle on 18 December 1950 on the SS Roma with my parents Zygmunt and Alina Paczynski. My father was a POW in Germany, married my mother after the war and emigrated to Australia. In 1954 my brother Richard was born, and by that time we were living in Cardiff and the newly formed Polish Association of Newcastle was 2 years old. My father Zygmunt was the founder and the first president. He also set up Polish schools in Cardiff, Newcastle, Maitland and Greta and assisted in the founding of Polish Associations there. He was responsible for the many and varied Polish cultural events in Newcastle especially in the fifties, sixities, seventies and eighties. He was a life member of the Polish Association of Newcastle. Zygmunt is survived by his wife, Alina, his daughter Halina, her husband Geoff, and his son Richard and his wife Kerrie. Halina's two children, Sean & Caitlin, with their children Makayla and Declan. Richard's two sons Leon and Drew.

October 4, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHalina Paczynski

I AM SUBMITTING MY MOTHER AND FATHER IWAN AND ROSALIE PYLYPEC WHO CAME TO NEWCASTLE ON THE FAIRSEA AUGUST 1949 WITH MY GRANDMOTHER AND GRANDFATHER FROM THE UKRAINE. I WAS ONLY 1 YEAR OLD AND CAN REMEMBER MUM TELLING ME HOW KIND THE PEOPLE WERE TO ME AS A LITTLE GIRL NOT KNOWING ANY ENGLISH AT ALL. THEY WERE SO PLEASED TO BE IN AUSTRALIA AND HAVE A HOME AT LAST

August 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKATHY CURRAN

I am submitting Augustin and Cyril Ivančič to be included on the Welcome Wall. The brothers immigrated to Australia in 1953 on the Nellie. They were later joined by his brother Vince and wife Eda. My Father Augustin is the one left to enjoy this celebration of a Welcome Wall in his home town of Newcastle. Thankyou for the opportunity in making this event possible. It will be great surprise for him.

August 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGina Horn

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