Saturday, December 13, 2014

Exciting Plans for the Australia Day Weekend 2015

The front view of the former Latoof and Callil Clothing Factory in Coster Street.
The old Latoof and Callil Canteen, in which we will have our exhibition.

We recently learnt that the former Latoof and Calill Factory (also known as Benalla Spinners,  located in Coster Street across from our hospital), where many of the migrants worked as part of their immigration contract with the Australian Government, will not stand much longer.
The site has been sold and will be demolished to make way for a residential development according to the new owners.
On the Australia Day Weekend they have given us access to the site for a special, limited exhibition. So you will find us here only, and not at BARC Hut 11 this one time.
The site holds so many memories for so many migrants, that we thought it would be great to have one last look. Our Opening will be part of the official Australia Day Program.
Watch this blog, and the Benalla Rural City Website, as we put together the program for the weekend.

Always Adding to the Exhibition

Recently Mike and I spent two separate weekends in Canberra on a mission to locate more information on the Benalla Migrant Camp Families. We were very lucky to have two fabulous finds: About 50 Bonegilla Migrant Registration Cards and a 2 Minute Colour Home Movie.

Amy Lay, the curator of the 'A Place Called Home' Exhibition at the National Archives was very helpful, and interested in our exhibition, as it was covering the same topic.

Equipped with the names of all our migrant families who have registered for our Benalla project, we were able to view dozens of boxes of Bonegilla cards with the corresponding letters of the alphabet. We needed to flick through all of them to find the ones we were after. Quite a task.
Mike with the morning's load ...

We found about 50 Bonegilla Cards for Benalla Migrant Camp residents.
Unbelievably, at the National Film and Sound Archives we also had a terrific find!
Clare Norton, the curator there helped us find a 2 minute home movie of the Benalla Migrant Camp!!