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The Immigration Buildings Victoria Quay 1906 - 1966

Nonja Peters

Peters, Nonja 2004, 'The immigration buildings Victoria Quay 1906-1966', Fremantle Studies, 3: 40-52.

This paper is concerned with the years 1906 to 1960 when the Immigration and Information Bureau (currently called the Old Police Station) located adjacent to the E Shed Markets was the hub of immigration activity on Victoria Quay, Fremantle. It also examines the thirty years during which the Waiting Rooms next door were witness to the heart-rending emotions that accompany arrival in a strange new land and departures to foreign shores. It reconstructs this immigration history through archival records, oral history extracts and some secondary sources relating to its main protagonists - the bureaucrats, immigrants, tourists and trade delegates who were the buildings foremost concern. A fuller appreciation of the history is achieved by locating it in its relevant socio-cultural and political timeframe. The historical facts central to the story include population increase, economic expansion, defence, scientific development, tourism, colonialism and its aftermath, diaspora, containerisation, globalisation and prominent people. They also include the built heritage and the economic expansion of the Port of Fremantle and Western Australia’s commercial centre and hinterland. The array of human emotions, Without which the story would be incomplete, are comprised mainly of loss, grief, despair and homesickness, strangeness, anxiety and relief, but also the joy of reunion. The buildings are, therefore, symbolic of a range of human activities and ways of life, which, because of present day travel costs, the ‘ordinary person on the street’ is unlikely to revisit.

The history of the Immigration and Information Bureau building is also inextricably linked to political and historic figures. For example, in 1891, a year after the colony was granted responsible government and became a state, capable of raising its own loans for its public works, Charles Yelverton O’Connor from New Zealand joined the Public Service as its Engineer-in-Chief. 1 His appointment and engineering expertise ensured that Fremantle and not Bunbury (its rival) became the State’s principal port, the first and last port-of-call for the Royal Mail and for international trade and passenger travel. It was also the first port-of-call for overseas immigrants coming to Australia in response to its need for labour in industry, commerce and farming. 2 This linked the buildings to transnational communities and technological advances such as the containerisation of the wharf, which not only transformed the port’s physical character but also determined the size of its future workforce.

By the 1880s, the colony already had extensive overseas and interstate trade associations. However, trade with overseas nations was often seriously compromised by the treacherous conditions, especially in winter, because ships were totally exposed to all weather. The frequent complaints compelled the Premier, John Forrest, to adopt CY O’ Connor’s plan for the construction of a safe harbour. 3

The port was opened to shipping in 1896. Immigration was not taken seriously, however, until British migration to WA was transformed from a trickle to a flood by the Moore government’s liberalisation of land acquisition and loans to develop wheat farming in the outer eastern districts. In 1906 the Colonial Secretary appointed Auber Octavius Neville, who was already working at the Premier’s Department, to be the State’s first Immigration Officer. 4 In this position Neville was required to minister to the needs of ‘...the bewildered mass of newcomers who had mostly arrived with the explicit aim of taking advantage of the enormous potential for expansion that existed at the time’. 5 This was a major task. Coming from shopkeeper, clerk, mechanic or teaching backgrounds, these people were starting life in Australia without any knowledge of farming and with only their clothes, a few possessions, rudimentary tools and their government handbook instructing them on how to sow their first crop. On arrival they were allocated a farm and dispatched into a wilderness so remote from civilisation that some never overcame the shock. 6

Immigration’s importance to WA was further acknowledged by the call for tenders by the Hon Mr Kingsmill, Colonial Secretary early that year to design and erect an immigration building on Victoria Quay. Completed in November 1906, it acquired the nomenclature Immigration and Information Bureau. 7 A judicious decision if the thousands of the travelling public who visited the building that year and the numerous passengers, trade delegates and migrants on the 154 overseas steamers (thirty-two being immigrant ships) are anything to go by. 8

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Fremantle's first official Immigration and Information Bureau, completed in 1906
Courtesy Fremantle Local History Collection, 976

From 1906 to 1962, apart from the period of the Depression and WWII, the Immigration and Information Building, the customs sheds and waiting areas were the focal point of immigration activity in the inner harbour. In 1962 they were all superseded by the newly constructed passenger terminal.

The government had first begun formalising arrangements to provide for the efficient reception of immigrants towards the end of 1905. New settlers were met and welcomed on arrival by government officers. The officers went out in the pilot steamer to board incoming mail boats an hour or two prior to their arrival at the wharf. Once on board and armed with lists of employment vacancies, they set about acquainting themselves with the various needs of the passengers. All newcomers were handed a labour bureau card outlining the state’s wage structure. The officers were required to assist migrants in every way possible to clear their luggage through customs and introduce them to various government officials likely to be of assistance in selecting land and/or obtaining employment. 9 They also made sure that the wharf in front of the shed was reserved for the reception of the immigrants and was cleared of all but officials until all immigrants had been landed and had entered the customs sheds.

Newcomers were subsequently taken to the state-run immigrant-receiving home in South Terrace, Fremantle by the home’s officer in charge. 10 Assisted migrants were provided three days free board and rent. Migrants were expected to have found employment by then. If unsuccessful, they could choose to stay longer at the home at a reduced cost. Within a few years Immigrants Homes had been established at Fremantle, Pier Street, Perth, Katanning, Narrogin and Geraldton. 11 Migrants given employment were taken to catch trains or buses leaving for country destinations the following morning. Conversely, migrants found to be suffering from tuberculosis were, in line with the official policy agreement, deported. 12

By 1908, Neville had employed a junior officer to join the Bureau staff to assist in handling the increased volume in immigrants and tourists being processed by them. 13 The added staff costs were small given the bureau’s immense productivity. A year later and now elevated to Secretary of Immigration, it was up to Neville to organise and keep records for the various immigration schemes designed to entice agricultural workers and domestic labour to Australia from the United Kingdom (UK).14 In this capacity he actively recruited migrants for WA. As before, the type of migrants recruited (mostly farm labourers and domestic servants) was largely determined by the state’s labour needs. The 1909 Annual Report, presented by Neville to both Houses of Parliament, notes his national and international recruitment activities:

... 1508 persons received State aid towards their passage to Western Australia, an increase of 210 on the previous year. All immigrants were British excepting 24 from Europe. Some 300 selectors have come to the State through the Melbourne Agency. 15

Most immigrants lured from the UK came as assisted or part refunded passage; if they did not fit these criteria they could still save on the fare with an advanced or nominated (sponsored) passage. 16

The rapidly increasing immigration intake required the State Government to establish a Department of Immigration, Tourism and General Information. In 1910 Neville was appointed its first head. In this role he not only actively lobbied for immigrants from the UK, but also from Canada and the USA. Prospective immigrants were enticed to Western Australia with offers of every possible assistance. 17 That year, a room was added to the Immigration and Information Bureau to enlarge the size of the public hall to facilitate the increase in immigration and tourism traffic Neville had generated. 18 The 1910-11 Immigration Report notes, ‘the work of this Bureau has been particularly heavy, entailing a severe tax upon the officers stationed there’. 19 Besides making personal acquaintance with each newcomer, the Immigration Agents stationed at the Bureau also dealt with up to 1000 letters of enquiry per month. Neville was also an important figure in the promotion of the WA tourist industry. It was he who first introduced printed literature - pamphlets, fliers and brochures - detailing WA’s tourist sites of note. The staff ’s workload became even greater when the Bureau also began packaging and shipping supplies of tourism and immigration information brochures to London, Colombo, India, and elsewhere. 20 It was hoped the literature sent to India would entice some of the 10 000 soldiers who returned to Britain from there each year to consider making WA their home. This literature was also handed to tourists and immigrants before they disembarked and was on display at the Immigration and Information Bureau. Bureau staff disseminated around 2000 copies of Western Australia: An Official Handbook (compiled by Hansard staff) and 21 550 copies of A Booklet of Things the Immigrant Should Know. They also distributed numerous brochures overseas via the steamers that berthed nearby, which they kept well supplied for each trip. 21

In 1910, 197 steamers were met. Sixteen thousand nine hundred and sixty-one new settlers landed and another 36 818 were in transit including 9265 government immigrants. The Bureau handled the increased demand by staying open night and day, as required, during each vessel’s stay in port. 22 The 1912 handbook noted:

The traveller, whose curiosity is aroused in regard to this great outpost of the British Empire will do well during his voyage from Colombo to Fremantle ... to peruse the literature issued by the Government and carried on most Orient, Peninsular, Oriental, Nord-Deutscher Lloyd, Messageries and White Star Lines and displayed at the Government Immigration and Information Bureau, Victoria Quay, Fremantle opposite the Mail Steamer berths, where he will see samples of the State’s products and maps and booklets containing much informative matter. 23

Wharf expansion during 1912/13, in particular the addition of ‘C’ Shed, made it necessary for Harbour authorities to move the Immigration and Information Bureau. 24 It was moved from its present position at the west end of ‘C’ Shed to a site about 200m east at the foot of the overhead bridge leading from the railway station to the wharf, directly opposite the mail steamers’ berth. 25 At the same time the room and offices, which had been at the back of the building, were relocated as additions to each end of the building. 26 The relocation of the Bureau to that position was unexpectedly advantageous as it was now right in the path of passengers both to and from the railway station and steamers. The Annual Report for that year records the Bureau as having distributed 91 000 information pamphlets. 27

The extent to which immigration had fired the imagination of the populace became manifest in 1913 when Neville was called before His Majesty’s Dominions Royal Commission on Natural Resources, Trade, and Legislation to give evidence on the state of immigration in Western Australia. 28 His report that current funds (£100 000-£120 000) spent annually on immigration was still not enough to continue expanding immigration, inspired Government leaders and prominent businessmen to establish the Million Club in January 1914. Dedicated to procuring a population of one million for Western Australia, it set about promoting the state’s produce, tourist spots, and immigration opportunities, overseas. 29 Visitors to the Bureau recall the displays of produce - wheat, wool, fruit and vegetables. 30 Neville’s not insignificant contribution to migration and tourism continued until 1915 when, against his will, he was appointed Chief Protector of Aborigines while initially still retaining his title Secretary of Immigration. 31

Prominent local, national and international events have always influenced immigration intakes. WWI, the Depression, WWII and, to a lesser degree, the Indian diaspora following the Declaration of Independence in 1949; the Boer, Korean and Vietnam Wars, and crises in Hungary, Poland, Timor and the Gulf, were just some of the more obvious situations held responsible for an increase or decrease in numbers. 32 Government policy such as the Immigration Restriction Act of 1901 (commonly known as the White Australia Policy) dictated the ethnic characteristics of newcomers to be granted entry. During WWI from 1914-1918, immigration to WA was negligible. In the year 1916-17 immigration officers met only 206 ships, 41 less than the previous year. Change occurred around the mid-1920s when large numbers of British immigrants were again making their way to WA, enticed this time to farm agricultural land under the Group Settlement Scheme. 33 The first major waves of non-British also began arriving in WA. 34

The next and final repositioning of the Immigration and Information Bureau took place in 1926. In contrast to earlier shifts this time it was initiated by the state government as part of an overall scheme to create an appropriate setting for the memorial statue of CY O’Connor created some years earlier by Italian immigrant and sculptor Pietro Porcelli. 35 The government insisted that the statue of the late Engineer-in Chief be placed in a prominent position looking out to the harbour. After much toing and froing, it was eventually decided to locate the statue and both buildings on the centreline of the space between ‘C’ and ‘D’ Sheds. 36 Following this decision the necessary set-backs and alterations to the Immigration Bureau and the footbridge to the railway station were completed. 37 In 1928 the new Waiting Rooms were erected on the Western side of the building and Mr Rochefort’s ‘First and Last’ refreshment room/tobacconist shop was shifted in line with it but on the eastern side to complement the statue and immigration building. At the same time colonnades were attached to the front of the immigration building and toilets to both ends of it. The main difference between the last and earlier shifts is the sudden concern with aesthetics and alignment shown by both the State Government and Fremantle Harbour Trust (FHT) Commissioners, ‘to produce as much uniformity as possible at this spot with the buildings’. 38

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The CY O'Connor building, to the left of the Immigration and Information Bureau was built in 1945 by the Curtin government as a café for waterside workers.

The new Waiting Rooms replaced an older building which had been renovated specifically for these purposes in 1912 and was situated much further west on Victoria Quay near the water tank. The new building comprised a ladies’ and children’s retiring room and toilets; a large general waiting room for people waiting to meet family and/or friends from overseas; a Wharf Foreman’s Office and a Wharf Patrol Officers’ Office. 39 The Fremantle Port Authority (FPA) felt the new office would create a more appropriate atmosphere for the Foreman than his previous office had done ‘providing that is, that he could be persuaded to eliminate his penchant for frying of eggs! 40 Conversely they considered the security it provided would be advantageous because it would mean the waiting rooms were always well conducted! 41

The immigration and tourism function of the building greatly diminished during the Depression. By 1930 there was not enough work in the Bureau Stock Office and Immigration to keep even one officer busy. The signage on the building was changed at the behest of the officer-in-charge to read ‘Government Tourist Bureau’ because he feared people were reacting adversely to the word immigration. 42 Later, following the outbreak of WWII, the Immigration Bureau played a significant role in Australia’s defence. From June 1940 to June 1946 the Army occupied the building to house the Guard for the Inspection of Wharf Passes. 43 When the military took over, the building’s other occupants, the Dairy Inspector, Tourism and Agricultural Department Agents, and the Messenger’s Exchange, were relegated to the Stock Inspector’s room. During wartime the place was also the arrival and departure point for troops. 44 Early in the war, convoys carrying Australian servicemen to the Middle East, Europe and in 1941 to Singapore and Malaysia, called at Fremantle to take on more troops, stores, fresh water and oil fuel. After WWII, from June 1946 to some time in 1947, the Immigration and Information Bureau was leased by the Navy to repatriate Royal Navy personnel including war brides. The Government Tourism and Immigration Agent, Agricultural Officer, Health Inspector (meat, fish and other incoming food stuffs), Potato Inspector and Dairy Inspector all returned to the building when shipping increased in 1948. 45

The Mass Migration Scheme that commenced after WWII links the Immigration Building to the career of the Hon Arthur Calwell, the first Federal Government Minister for Immigration, who had devised the scheme. From 1947 to 1970, 169 ships carried nearly 2 000 000 immigrants to Australia from countries in Southern, Eastern, Central and Western Europe, Britain other Commonwealth countries and from the Baltic States. 46 The Port of Fremantle was especially important during the peak years of the Displaced Person’s (DPs) Scheme - from 1947 to 1949 - when immigration authorities maximised the use of scarce shipping by turning ships around at Fremantle. Immigrants disembarked in WA but before travelling to Eastern States destinations were accommodated in Commonwealth immigration transit camps (Swanbourne, Graylands and Point Walter) in the metropolitan area until onward travel could be organised. 47

As in earlier periods, immigration and other officials boarded the ships on arrival in Gage Roads to check passports and other documentation. When this procedure was complete, the ship berthed at Victoria Quay to disembark passengers and their baggage. In accordance with Department of Immigration policy, state officials handled the affairs of those bound for WA, and Commonwealth officials the Eastern States bound passengers. Following the obligatory procedures, representative of the State and Commonwealth Governments welcomed the passengers to Australia over the ship’s speakers, and advised them of the disembarkation plans. When nominated migrants, whose destination was the metropolitan area, were announced over the public address system, their nominators promptly stepped forward to greet them and take them to their homes. 43 Displaced Persons and assisted British migrants were met at the wharf by the Commonwealth Migration Officer responsible for immigration formalities and onward movement to accommodation centres. After the usual customs procedures the British were bussed directly to the Point Walter military camp located on the Swan River in Melville, a Perth suburb. 49 The DPs were taken by train to Northam, a wheatbelt town 98 kms from Perth, or Cunderdin, 30kms further on.

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The Immigration Bureau and the CY O’Connor statue were moved to a more prominent position in 1926. PWD plan 2458

Migrants recall the culture shock they experienced when immigration officials started giving DPs disembarkation instructions in English:

Until then English was something in books and on signs in American army camps. Our lingua franca was German, a language we all understood to some degree, and to follow instructions in English was a new and frightening experience. ... 50

The first steps on Australian soil also roused all sorts of emotions. AJ Jarosek recalls that relief, hope, anxiety, fear, were all present. 51 The insensitivity and severity of customs officers intensified the negative feelings. They took away any fruit, flowers and stuffed toys carried in hand luggage. One woman shed bitter tears when they threw away her cactus plant, a present from her ageing mother, a good luck token for the new country. 52

Throughout the period the Immigration Buildings were also a focal point for volunteers. In the early years members of the Mothers’ Union, Salvation Army, Women’s Service Guilds and Women’s Immigration Auxiliary (WIA) spent hours at the wharf to welcome and advise newcomers to WA. 53 The Salvation Army also provided accommodation at their Perth Army Hostel for girls going to country postings. Amelia McDonald, a member of the WIA, notes:

Now the first thing that occurred to us to do was to meet the new arrivals and give them the hand of friendship and words of counsel and encouragement ... Of course we had to obtain passes which were reluctantly granted and at first we were only permitted to interview the migrant on the wharf. Later the passes were extended to include the Immigration Home at Fremantle. 54

In the 1920s when immigration had increased after WWI, the women appeared to offer their help. M Jeffrey notes:

West Australians’ welcome is evidenced as soon as the gangway is down, for each migrant boat as it arrives is anticipated by several most worthy organisations. 55

On boat days Mrs Cecil Andrews, the General Secretary of the Mother’s Union, was a familiar figure. As an English woman she went to greet others from her own country coming in under the Group Settlement scheme to advise them about the difficulties. Women’s groups also lobbied for improvements at the Immigrants Home, taught the women cooking and informed them about maternity matters. 56

Post-war arrivals were welcomed and offered emotional and practical assistance by the Good Neighbour Council, Red Cross, YWCA and the Travellers Aid Society. Migrants recall that before the trains took off from Victoria Quay to the country migrant camps, Red Cross ladies, dressed in either powder blue or powder pink, presented them with an orange and a drink. 57 According to Edwin White, Director of the Good Neighbour Council: Oranges were distributed at the docks and were welcomed by the newcomers with delight after years of wartime rations and post-war restrictions. Countless gallons of tea were also brewed alongside the railway tracks at Fremantle and handed up in a wide variety of containers to those who boarded the train for the immigrants’ camp near Northam. 58

During the peak years, these buildings witnessed the processing of more than 435,000 immigrants from around the world who made Western Australia their home. 59 The Department of Immigration Officer eventually vacated the premises on 12 December 1964. 60 The Tourist Information Bureau requested a shift out of the building after the demolition of the footbridge in July 1966, situated between the Immigration Building and the Waiting Rooms next door. They finally vacated the premises on 31 August 1966. 61

Presented at the Fremantle Studies Day
27 October 2002

Endnotes

1 Le Page, JSH Building a State: The Story of the Public Works Department of Western Australia 1829-1985, Water Authority of Western Australia, Leederville, WA, 1986, p 178.

2 Kiera, A et al, Victoria Quay and its Architecture: Its History and Assessment of Cultural Significance, Fremantle, internal report, 1991, p.45

3 ibid.

4 Jacobs, P Mister Neville: A Biography, Fremantle Arts Centre Press, Fremantle, 1990, p 35; AO Neville is better known as Protector of Aborigines.

5 ibid, p 39.

6 ibid, p 36.

7 Department of Immigration, Annual Report, June 1907, p.6; Ffion Murphy & Richard Nile, “Immigration and Settlement Part H”, in The Gate of Dreams, The Western Mail Annuals 1897-1955, pp 62-63; Immigration was considered vital to agricultural expansion in the years of consolidation, from the Gold Rushes at the turn of the century to the 1930s. The West Australian and Western Mail were not only firmly in favour of it, they went so far as to commit themselves to a long-term publicity campaign designed to encourage an immigrant workforce to Western Australia by presenting attractive images of those who already lived here.

8 Department of Immigration, Annual Report, June 1907, p 6.

9 Jacobs, Mr Neville, 1990.

10 Department of Immigration Annual Royal Commission on the Natural Resources, Trade, and Legislation of Certain Portions of His Majesty’s Dominions. Minutes of Evidence Taken in Australia in 1913. Part I. p. 79. LOCATION AND ACC # Formerly a military barracks and later an old men’s home it was converted for immigrants around 1906.

11 ibid.

12 Jacobs, Mr Neville, 1990, p 40.

13 Department of Immigration Annual Report, 1908, p 6.

14 Jacobs, Mr Neville, p 35.

15 Department of Immigration Annual Report, 1909.

16 Handbook of Western Australia, 1912, issued by the Immigration and Tourism Department notes that the poorest man could reach Western Australia. If he had the necessary qualifications and was considered a suitable settler by immigration officers he was given assistance to secure a £2 passage.

17 Royal Commission, His Majesty’s Dominions, p 15; Jacobs, Mr Neville, 1990; M. Jeffrey, ‘When the Migrant Comes West’, in The Golden West 1926-27. 1926,

18 PWD WA 16663; Alterations were designed by Hillsdon Beasley who was then Chief Architect. PWD Plans 16663 do not identify the purpose for this addition. Neither is the addition mentioned in the Fremantle Harbour Trust’s Commissioners’ Minutes or Annual Reports for 1910-11.

19 Department of Immigration Annual Reports 1905 — 1917.

20 Jacobs, Mr Neville, 1990, p 49.

21 Handbook of Western Australia: An Official Publication for the Information of Commercial Men, Tourists, and Immigrants, Department of Immigration, Tourism and Information. 1912. SRO, Perth 22 Department of Immigration Annual Report, 1912, SRO, Perth

23 Handbook of Western Australia

24 Immigration Reports 1912-13; PRO, ACC.3466, AN/WAS 86, Item 113/12; Letter from the secretary of the Department of Public Works to the Colonial Secretary's Department dated 12 April, 1912, records the FHT decision to extend ‘C’ Shed on Victoria Quay 150 ft westward notes the extension will cover the portion of the quay now occupied by the Information bureau and it will be necessary to for this building to be removed, “and if it is agreeable to you this removal can be done at the same time that the extension of the shed is being carried out, and the Commissioners are quite agreeable to the Bureau still remaining on the Quay, the extent of the removal being some 40ft, or thereabouts in a westerly direction. The relative position of ‘C’ Shed and the Bureau will then be that the Bureau will be situated close up to the Western end of the shed.”

25 Immigration Department Annual Report, 1914, SRO, Perth

26 PRO. ACC. 3466 WAS 86, Item. CY O’Connor Memorial, Alterations and Shifting of and Fremantle Harbour Trust Shop; PWD Plan 16663.

27 Immigration Report for 1913-1914 p.13: The reports notes that during that year around 25 000 illustrated postcard, 26 000 pamphlets of various kinds and 700 statistical and other maps were sent from the Fremantle Bureau to London, Colombo and Cape Town.

28 Royal Commission on the Natural Resources, Trade, and Legislation of Certain Portions of His Majesty’s Dominions. Minutes of Evidence Taken in Australia in 1913. Part I. pp.74-81. Re the system adopted for the reception and placing of immigrants when first arriving in the State.

29 Jacobs, Mr Neville, 1990, p 49 (with the Premier, Mr Scaddan as President, and AO Neville as Secretary).

30 Oral History S.J./ XH/78 to accompany photograph #926 Fremantle Local History Collection.

31 Jacobs, Mr Neville, 1990, p 48.

32 Peters, N Milk and Honey But No Gold: Postwar Migration to Western Australia, 1945-1965, UWA Press, Nedlands, 2001.

33 Immigration Report, Government of Western Australia, 1917. SRO, Perth

34 See, Mennicken-Coley, M The Germans in Western Australia, Innovators, Immigrants, Internees. Perth, 1993; J Yiannakis, Megisti in the Antipodes, Hesperian Press, Perth, 1996; E Czeladka, ‘Yugoslavs in the Swan Valley and their Involvement in Viticulture’, Studies in Western Australian History XII, 1991.

35 Keane, Rev SB “Pietro G. Porcelli Sculptor 1872-1943”, Early Days, Journal of the Royal Western Australian Historical Society, Vol.8, part 5, Perth, 1981.

36 PRO ACC 3465 WAS 87 Item102/27; see PWD Plan 24988. The colonnades appear on the Immigration Bureau building plans for the first time in 1926. However, their appearance is nowhere explained.

37 Fremantle Harbour Trust Commissioner’s Annual Report, 1928, p 13. PWD Plan 24988, shows that alterations to the footbridge steps were necessary to enable the three buildings (Immigration Bureau, the Refreshment Shop and Waiting Rooms) to be kept in alignment.

38 ACC.3465.AN/WAS. 86.Item102/27. Letter to the Engineer-in-Chief of the Department of Works and Labour on 16 January, 1928 from the Secretary of the Harbour Trust; ACC.3465.AN/WAS 86. Item 102/27; see also PWD Plans 24988 and 25634, which shows that alterations to the footbridge steps are necessary to enable the three buildings (Immigration Bureau, the Refreshment Shop and Waiting Rooms) to be kept in alignment; The Commissioners also agree that after the expiry of Mr. Rochefort’s lease that a provision of a new lease of this site should be that the front of the building or any other building to be erected thereon should be made uniform with the other buildings in that vicinity; FHT Commissioner’s Minutes, 1927.

39 PRO. ACC.3465.AN/WAS 86. Item.102/27. PWD Plan 24581 shows the general lay-out for the proposed Waiting Rooms (ladies and children’s retiring room, general waiting room and the Patrol Officers’ office, were sent to the Harbour Trust Commissioners’ meeting for approval on 14 June 1927 (see also PWD Plan 25634). NB the wharf foreman’s office was mooted later. During the 1950s, documentary evidence suggests it became the Victoria Quay Police Office. Fremantle Harbour Trust’s Commissioners Annual Report, 1912, p 25.

40 ibid; The report explains that for many years the foreman’s old office had been a rendezvous at lunch hour for his colleagues, where ‘he also fried them eggs and rested his weary limbs’.

41 PRO ACC 3467 WAS 86 Item 932.

42 PRO ACC 924 AN/WAS7 5/ 1.

43 PRO ACC 924 AN 75 Item 18/1965; Army Museum of Western Australia, Military Sites in Western Australia. 1826-2000, Vol 1 & 2, December 1999.

44 Fletcher, T ‘Fremantle 1939-1945; Extraordinary Events at the Port’, Fremantle Studies, No 1, 1999.

45 PRO ACC 924 AN 75 Item18/1965.

46 Gray, J Migrant Ships and Luxury Liners, Sydney 1992.

47 Peters, Milk and Honey, 2001.

48 ibid.

49 AA PP102/1. Item M194/41/544; AA PP102/1. Item M194/41/544; This camp for British migrants was officially leased from the state government for use as a reception, training and staging centre for migrants from the United Kingdom on 28 March 1947; PRO AN 1193 Item 42/55 - Between 1947-1959, 30 221 British migrants came to WA; Votes and Proceedings 1947/48; The first migrants to be accommodated there were 250 Britons disembarked from the Asturias from England on 22 September 1947.

50 Peters, Milk and Honey, 2001.

51 Jarosek, personal communication, 1992.

51 Ibid.

53 Jeffrey, “When the migrant comes west”, pp39. -

54 ibid, These women greatly improved conditions for the early immigrants. One of the improvements was arranging for single women, not happy with their jobs, to be able to return to the Immigrant home until a more suitable job had been found.

55 ibid

56 ibid, The WIA eventually received a grant of £50 per annum from the Premier Sir James Mitchell to enable them to continue to offer their services to newly arrived immigrants; Morrison, Amelia & McDonald, Fraser, 'The Women’s Service Guilds of WA’, Information Paper.

57 Svetlana Schlusser, personal communication, 1992.

58 Edwin White, ‘The Good Neighbour Council’, in R. Johnston (ed). Immigrants in Western Australia, 1979, UWA Press, Perth, p 97.

59 Western Australia, Yearbooks 1912, 1920, 1957. 1960; 1909 Report on Immigration presented to both Houses of Parliament by His Excellency’s Command, Report written by AO Neville, Immigration Officer.

60 PRO ACC 924 AN/WAS 75/1. Item 6/28.

61 ibid.


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