Thursday, February 16, 2017

Tatura Internment Museum

In a surprise to us, we learned that Australia housed Internment camps during WWII. Several were located near Tatura and there is a museum there that tells the story. It also tells about how the region was irrigated, but that is for another day.

We got into a conversation with the docents who were fascinating and ran well past closing time. As a result, we did not see nearly all the collection. In the room we saw were drawings done by two men. The one above was done by a German who was on a ship that sank an Australian ship. The POW's were brought to a camp in Victoria. The family donated the drawings to the museum.

The drawing below was done by a german jew who had left Germany before the way and moved to England. The English were afraid it might be a spt and had him transported to Australia. We was a judge in Germany and a university professor in England. I think we were told he spoke 9 languages. Clearly he was a talented artist as well.

The fellow on the german ship did a self portrait and it is displayed along with a photo of his boat.

The delightful people we spent our afternoon with were Lurline and Arthur Knee. Arthur is 92 and Lurline can't be too far behind. We got so many stories. Such wonderful people!

About half an hour after closing time, we were on our way out and saw this drawing of Jacky. Apparently, she did not the way her hair looked in the image and tried to peel it off. Fortunately, she was stopped so we have this wonder image now. There is a lot of character in this face. Makes it easier to imagine the life these people had.

What is really interesting is that the 30,000 or so people put in the internment camps mostly settled in Australia and because part of the current vibrant culture we see now. We may have to go back and finish the tour of the museum.