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Two men and two women looking in a shop window

Personal stories of migration

History of migration

Identity and belonging

The Migration and Cultural Diversity Collection

The Museum’s Migration and Cultural Diversity collection includes over 9000 objects, documents, photographs and oral histories, and over two thirds of the collection can be found on the Museums Victoria Collections website. Below are selections from the collection—once you are in, you can use keywords to make your own searches to explore this diverse collection!

Patchwork quilt

Museum Victoria Migration Collections: 1830s-1930s

A collection relating to migration to Australia, and particularly Victoria, from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

View the collection online

Handwritten letter

Rebecca Greaves Letter, Melbourne, 1851

Letter written by Rebecca Greaves to her uncle in England containing an interesting and detailed account of what life was like in Melbourne during 1851.

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Badge - White Australia, People's Liberal Party, Australia, 1911-1920

Our Federation Journey – A ‘White Australia’

During the long political process that led to Federation, a stronger sense of what it meant to be Australian was formed.

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Black and white photo Qemal Family, Shepparton, 1968

Muslims in Australia Image Collection

This collection of original and digital photographs is the result of a research collaboration (2016-19) between Museums Victoria and Dr Dzavid Haveric.

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Movie Camera & Case - Bell & Howell

Sigalas Family Collection

The Sigalas family's immigration story is a rich narrative, told by over 80 objects, which relates to a number of themes in the social and immigration history of Melbourne.

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Greeting Card - Karl Muffler to Hilde Muffler, Tatura, 1940s

Karl Friedrich Muffler, German Migrant, Pastry Chef & Internee, 1930

Karl Friedrich Muffler, was born 14 June 1900 in south-west Germany, he qualified pastry chef and confectioner in 1917.

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Red vinyl suitcase

Cuc Lam, Vietnamese Migrant, 1978

Cuc and her husband Huu Minh who escaped from Vietnam in a river boat on 19 May 1978.

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Sudanese teenager holding a basketball

Bul Bulkoch, Sudanese Migrant, 1996

Bul was 13 when he arrived in Australia in October 1996 with his parents, younger sister and brother.

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Drawing – Refugee Journey

Zahra Jaffari was a teenager when her family (from the Hazara ethnic minority) fled Afghanistan around 2015. They lived in difficult circumstances in Indonesia, awaiting acceptance to come to Australia, which was Zahra's dream. That dream didn't eventuate, and she now lives in Canada.

View the collection online

Detail of a marionette puppet

Cultural Stereotypes and Racism in Museums Victoria Collections

Many objects and images in the Museum's collections depict racism, cultural stereotyping and cultural appropriation.

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