From across the sea - the museum's migration program explores our cultural heritage.

The arrival of waves of more than ten million migrants by boat and plane is one of the major themes in Australia’s history, and a foundation narrative of modern Australia, infusing our country with more than 200 different cultural and linguistic traditions. Was your family among them? 

Nearly half of all Australians were born overseas or have at least one parent born overseas. Migrants have contributed enormously to the making of modern Australia - we believe museums sharing their stories can increase our understanding of the unique challenges many migrants face.

Image: Group of migrants on the deck of MV Castel Verde, Italy, 1950–1957. ANMM Collection Gift from Barbara Alysen. Reproduced courtesy International Organisation for Migration. ANMM Collection ANMS02014[024]

Explore their stories:

Learn more about our migration activities

Past exhibitions and events (.pdf 181kb)

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Migration Achievements Report (.pdf 3MB)

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Migration Blogs

Discover our shared histories through these compelling migration stories.

Passengers become amateur navigators as they trace their vessel’s progress on a long 19th century sea voyage. From ‘Scenes on board an Australian emigrant ship’, The Illustrated London News, 1848.  ANMM Collection 00003594

Of stars and jellyfish

15 Jan 2019

Volunteer researcher Alex Murtazaeva has been looking through the museum’s library and collection for stories of the sometimes strange things people got up to on long sea voyages in the past.

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Marie and Michel Nehme at Fairlane Farm, Nehme vineyard, Yenda, 1988. All images reproduced courtesy Julie Nehme

Wine and poetry

10 Jan 2019

Hailing from a Lebanese region known for its grapes, it is fitting that Michel and Marie Nehme established a thriving vineyard in the heart of the Riverina district of New South Wales, which they lovingly tended by hand while raising a young family.

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Lace

Lace and the displaced

09 Nov 2018

Today marks 80 years since Kristallnacht (‘Crystal Night’), the night when the Nazis targeted, arrested and murdered Jews across Germany and parts of Austria and Czechoslovakia.

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Welcome Wall Unveiling

Welcome Wall

25 Sep 2018

The Welcome Wall pays tribute to the migrants who have travelled the world to call Australia home. More than 200 countries are represented on the Welcome Wall, which faces Darling Harbour and Pyrmont Bay, where many migrants arrived in Australia.

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Cane farmers

Operation Kangaroo

06 Aug 2018

Sixty years ago today, the first contingent of assisted immigrants arrived under the Spanish migration agreement’s Operación Canguro (‘Operation Kangaroo’) to work as cane-cutters in north Queensland.

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The Staging Post

26 Jun 2018

To mark Refugee Week last week, the museum was honoured to host the Sydney screening of the 2017 feature documentary The Staging Post in partnership with Settlement Services International.

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The saga of Skaubryn

18 May 2018

It's International Museum Day, an annual event that raises awareness about the role of museums in cultural exchange and the development of mutual understanding. This year’s theme of ‘hyperconnected museums’ focuses on how museums can make their collections accessible and connect with local communities.

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Welcome Wall May 2018

09 May 2018

Last weekend the much-loved sports journalist and soccer broadcaster, Les Murray, was honoured by his family to have his name unveiled on the museum's Welcome Wall.

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