Black and white photograph of Margit Schmideg and her sons Stephen and Peter, standing in the snow at Lake Mountain, Victoria, circa 1962. Margit and Zoltan Schmideg migrated to Australia from Hungary with their sons Stephen and Peter in January 1957. The family often enjoyed a day trip to Lake Mountain during the winter.

Stephen and Peter Schmideg fled Budapest with their parents Zoltan and Margit after the Soviet repression of the Hungarian revolution in 1956. Zoltan and Margit had already survived appalling experiences and loss of family as Jews during World War II. They managed to escape to Austria, before being processed and joining their ship the Aurelia in Genoa, before finally arriving in Melbourne on 28 January 1957.

Description of Content

Woman with two boys standing in snow and forest.

Physical Description

Black and white digital photograph


Statement of Historical Significance:
This collection of objects and photographs provides a rare opportunity to document the experiences of migrant children, both at point of arrival in Australia and subsequent settlement. The toys represent the interweaving of both Australian and American popular culture in the 1950s, on the cusp of the launch of television in Australia, as well as the increasing popularity of Australian native symbols to represent an Australian identity. The photos of the children at play with the items is a rare opportunity to document the objects in use at the time. They also demonstrate the role of some community groups (in this case Jewish) in greeting newly arrived migrants and the recognition of the special attention children might require, particularly after traumatic experiences in countries of origin.

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