Researchers track Darwin’s Greek pioneers

01-Feb-2016

Head of Greek Studies at CDU Associate Professor George Frazis says the research project will honour the legacy of Darwin’s first Greeks

Head of Greek Studies at CDU Associate Professor George Frazis says the research project will honour the legacy of Darwin’s first Greeks


The footsteps of Darwin’s first Greek and Cypriot migrants are being traced in a landmark history project launched by Charles Darwin University.

Head of Greek Studies Associate Professor George Frazis said the project would document the legacy of the pioneer families who arrived in Darwin during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Highlights from Dr Frazis’ preliminary investigations included discovering the grave of Darwin’s first Kalymnian, and encountering the descendant of the first Macedonian during a chance visit to Perth.

“An 83-year-old lady attended a seminar I delivered in Perth the other year and told me her father was Darwin’s first Macedonian and was buried there in 1958,” Dr Frazis said.

“She said her father moved from northern Greece to Adelaide in 1938, served in the Australian army during WWII and then resettled in Darwin with his family in 1951.

“Now we are slowly starting to put everything together.”

Dr Frazis’s preliminary investigations also included interviewing local community members and assigning Greek Studies students with research tasks relating to the project.

“The Greek community has been instrumental in helping change and shape life in Darwin in many positive ways,” Dr Frazis said.

“Their contributions to the wider community have been invaluable.”

The CDU Foundation’s Guardians of Greek Language and Culture is supporting the project, which will form a committee of academics and local community members. The committee will create a long-term strategic plan to develop a multi-volume publication that documents their findings.

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