Here nor There
Swiss-Italians on the Walhalla Goldfield
1865 - 1915
In the decades following the discovery of gold in Walhalla, Victoria, in
1863, among the thousands who flocked to the district hoping to make
their fortune were hundreds of Italians and Swiss-Italians. Many were
sojourners, temporary residents, who later moved to other areas in
Australia or returned home permanently.
Some settled on the goldfield with their families. Drawing from a wide
range of sources, this book offers a reconstructed history of goldfield
life from the viewpoint of the Italian speakers who were present from
the beginning. Instead of adopting a ‘big picture’ historical approach
to Italian settlement in Australia, it examines the finer texture of a
small place and seeks to push the boundaries of understanding what
nineteenth century Italian-speaking men and women may have made of their
lives in a foreign land. Migration patterns, work practices and the
evolution of community within settler society are also evaluated. The
book also emphasizes the relevance of micro-studies of this nature and
their place within the wider national and international study of
migration. It also includes a detailed names index of over four hundred
individuals found to have lived on the goldfield, which should be of
great interest to family researchers.
Annamaria Davine is an honorary research fellow in the University of
Melbourne’s School of Historical Studies. She was born in Italy and
migrated to Australia with her mother in 1951, joining her father who
had arrived earlier that year.
In 2006, she completed a PhD at the University of Melbourne and this
book is based on her doctoral thesis. Other publications include Vegnimo
da Conco ma simo Veneti, a study of the Veneti who settled in Central
and West Gippsland 1925-1970; and Building Community, the fifty year
history of the Pastorelle Sisters in Australia, an Italian Congregation
of Religious Sisters who arrived in 1955.
PUBLISHER: The Italian Australian Institute (I.A.I.)
is a non-profit organization, supported by the co-operation between the
Grollo Ruzzene Foundation and La Trobe University. Its charter states
that its main aim is to research and study every aspect of the Italian
presence in Australia.
available for $30 (plus $10 postage in Australia) from the Italian Australian
Institute at Latrobe University, P.O. Box 8280, Northland (Vic)
3072, www.iai.com.au; email: firstname.lastname@example.org; telephone 8480 0400.