Slovenian Community Mildura

Mildura is one of the larger and important country town of the North-West Victoria, it’s the center of Victorian agricultural land with some 40,000 people of many different nationalities. City of Mildura is located 550 km from Victorian capital Melbourne, 1100 from Sydney and 400km from Adelaide. Australian largest river Murray is giving this desert land a rich agricultural life. In  the nearby town Wentworth our mighty river Murray meets with a longest Australian river Darling and together continue its way to South Australia.

The word  »Mildura« is Aboriginal name and it means »red soil, sore eyes«. Typical flora consist of Mallee bush, variety of eucalyptus and salt bushes. In many areas of the nearby desert, we can find enormous hills of red sand, with rich fauna, such as, blue neck lizards, kangaroos, emus, wombats, possums and most colourful Australian native birds.

First Slovenian people came to Mildura in early 50′, when the Australian government opened the migrant camp, mostly for the great needs for a seasonal labour, such as grape and citrus »pickers«.  Most left after the harvest, but some also stayed and made a new life in Mildura or surrounding farms, or fruit blocks.

Jožica Gerden, Mildura, 14.9.2012

Further Reading

More information about the Slovenian language classes with photographs can be found in the book by Draga Gelt: Chronicle of Slovenian Schools and Slovenian Language Teachers in Australia pp. 619-624, available as well online from the NUK (National University Library in Ljubljana, Digital Library of Slovenia:

Photo Gallery

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