To Bonegilla from Somewhere
Pages: 290 pages
Release Date: September 2013
The word Bonegilla resonates deeply with those who have ever lived there. A place in the bush in northern Victoria, it was the first home for Displaced Persons (DPs) after World War Two – many Poles, Czechs, Latvians, Lithuanians, Estonians and Ukrainians among them. In fact it was the largest migrant camp in Australia’s history. This was a town like no other – under southern skies there were echoes of Warsaw, Budapest, Riga and Prague – as well as talk of vanished worlds and Soviet post-war realities. This book traces the tumultuous journeys of two DPs, Bogdan and Valerie, to this strange bush town which came to occupy a unique, mysterious and iconic place in Australian migration history.
As a ‘Bonegilla kid’ of East European background, Wanda Skowronska has spent much of her life spelling the word Bonegilla to those who have never heard of it. With family members on several continents, she lives in Sydney and works as an educational psychologist. She also writes for several periodicals, being a regular contributor to Annals. She completed her Doctorate in 2011.