- Macedonian Australian
group= Macedonian Australians Македонски Австралијци "Makedonski Avstralijci" flagicon|Republic of Macedoniaflagicon|Australia
caption = Notable Macedonian Australians: '
Mile Sterjovski' ' Nick Malceski', ' Chris Joannou'
poptime= 40,655 (by birth, 2006)
83,978 (by ancestry, 2006)
Melbourne, Sydney, Wollongong,
rels=Predominantly Macedonian Orthodox
langs= Predominantly Macedonian
Macedonian Australians are
Australians of ethnic Macedonian descent. Many have their origins in the 1920s and 1930s although larger numbers came to Australian after the Greek Civil War. By far the largest wave of immigration was during the 1960s and 1970s. Today a large number of people have Macedonian origin and they are one of Australia's most prominent minorities groups. Macedonians have made a beneficial contribution to Australian society.
In the 2006 Census, 40,656 Australian residents are listed as having been born in the
Australian cities with the largest Macedonian-born communities are
Melbourne(17,286, in particular the outer suburbs), Sydney(11,630, in particular in the Southern) and Wollongong (4,279 - about 1.6% of the Wollongong population).
In 2001, 81,898 people claimed Macedonian Ancestry, in 2006 this rose to 83,978 in 2006. Macedonian was the 21st most common Ancestry group. Of the total number who claimed Macedonian ancestry in 2001 39,244 or 47.9% were born in the Republic of Macedonia, 35,805 or 43.7% were born in Australia, 2,919 or 3.6% were born in Greece and roughly 5% were born elsewhere. cite web|url = http://www.immi.gov.au/media/publications/pdf/people_of_australia.pdf |title = The People of Australia: Statistics from the 2001 Census|format = pdf of 84 pages | year = 2003| accessdate = 2008-07-16|publisher = Australian Department of Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs]
Most Macedonian Australians are of the Orthodox Christian faith, although there is a small number of
Muslimsand Methodists. 36,749 Macedonian-born Australian residents declared they were Christian, and 2,161 stated they were Muslim. In 2001 there were a total of 53,249 adherents to the Macedonian Orthodox Church. 28,474 or 53.5% of these were born in the Republic of Macedonia, 21,324 or 40% were born in Australia, 1,340 or 2.5% were born in Greece and roughly 4% were born elsewhere.
Macedonian languagewas the tenth most common language spoken in Australia after English. In 2006 67,835 people spoke the Macedonian languageat home. In 2001 the one-third of Macedonian speakers were aged over 65, 25.9% were aged from 55-64, 31.8% were aged from 25-54, 1.2% were aged from 13-24 and 7.7% were aged from 0-12. 53.2% or 38,826 speakers were born in the Republic of Macedonia, 37.6% or 27,051 speakers were born in Australia, 4.4% or 3,152 speakers were born in Greeceand a further 1.3% or 908 speakers were born in Yugoslavia.
Most Australians born in Macedonia use the
Macedonian languageat home (35,070 or 86% out of 40,656 in 2006).cite web|url = http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/subscriber.nsf/0/5618AB4511347DC2CA257306000D44C2/$File/2914055002_2006%20(Reissue).xls |format = Excel download| title = 2914.0.55.002 2006 Census Ethnic Media Package| date = 2007-06-27|accessdate = 2008-07-14|publisher = Australian Bureau of Statistics|work = Census Dictionary, 2006 (cat.no 2901.0)] n Proficiency in English for Australians born in Macedonia was self-described by census respondents as very well by 33%, well by 33%, 26% not well (8% didn't state or said not applicable).
The most significant populations of Macedonian speakers as of 2001 were
Melbourne- 30,083, Sydney- 19,980, Wollongong - 7,420, Perth - 5,772, Newcastle - 1,993, Geelong- 1,300, Queanbeyan- 1,105.Fact|date=July 2008
Many suburbs have large Macedonian speaking communities, the most largest are;
Port Kembla(20.9%), Thomastown(16.7%), Banksia (16.1%), Coniston(15.9%) and Lalor(14.8%). In 2001 Cringila was the "most Macedonian" suburb in all of Australia with 32.8% of the population speaking Macedonian at home.
History of ethnic Macedonians in Australia
Macedonians have been arriving in Australia since the late 1880s on
Pečalba. Pečalbari (the man in the family) would go and work overseas to earn money then return home with the spoils. This restricted major settlement. The two major waves of early Macedonian migration according to Peter Hill were when, in 1924 America implemented tougher immigration policies and in 1936 when the Ioannis Metaxasregime came into power. [Hill (1989) p. 10] By 1921 there were 50 Macedonians in Australia, by 1940 this number had reached over 6,000., the majority of whom were from Florina, Kastoriaand Bitola. After World War Twoand the Greek Civil Warmany Slavic Macedonians from Greececame to Australia, these people are known as Aegean Macedonians, they settled in areas including Richmond and Footscray.cite web|url = http://www.migrationheritage.nsw.gov.au/readingroom/reports/npws/npws-4_-2.html |title = Migration Heritage Centre: A Multicultural Landscape: National Parks and the Macedonian Experience: 4. Macedonian migration to Australia|publisher = National Parks and Wildlife Service (New South Wales)|last = Thomas|first = Martin| work = A Multicultural Landscape: National Parks and the Macedonian Experience|year = 2005|accessdate = 2008-07-16 ]
When the Yugoslav policies that encouraged its citizens to work overseas was started many
Ethnic Macedonianswithin Yugoslavia left for Australia. The peak of this migration was in the early 1970s. They settled in mainly industrial districts, particularly in Wollongongand Newcastle, in the Melbourne suburb of Thomastownand the Sydney suburb of Rockdale. Many Macedonians from Yugoslavia would also settle in isolated parts of Australia such as Port Hedland. Most of these immigrants were from an agricultural background. Macedonian migration had slowed by the 1980s only to restart in the early 1990s after the breakup of Yugoslavia.
Macedonians in New South Wales
Many of the first Macedonian Came to New South Wales. During the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s many
Aegean Macedonianssettled in Crabbes Creek, Queanbeyan, Newcastle and Richmond. By the time of the Macedonian-Australian People's LeagueMacedonians could be found all over the state. Branches were opened in Sydney ("Vesela Makedonija"), Queanbeyan ("Alexander the Great"), Richmond ("Kotori"), Crabbes Creek ("Sloboda"), Katoomba, Port Kembla, Forbes, Braidwood, Beechwood (Wauchope) , Lithgow, Captains Flat, Newcastle, Bonnyrigg and Griffith. The first Macedonian hall built in Australia was the Macedonian Cultural Hall in Crabbes Creek. From the 1960s thousands of Macedonians from the Bitola, Prespa, Struga and Ohrid regions of Macedonia would come to New South Wales. Many of these immigrants settled in Wollongong, Sydney and Newcastle. Today the Macedonian Community in New South Wales is the second largest in Australia. By 2001, 30,658 people were speaking the Macedonian language at home with 19,057 of these born in the Republic of Macedonia. In 2006, 34,316 people claimed Macedonian ancestry but community spokesperson claim that in New South Wales there are over 70,000 Macedonians.
;SydneySydney is home to one of the largest concentrations of Macedonians in Australia and in the diaspora. The first Macedonians came to Sydney in the early 1920s before making their way to the coal fields of Port Kembla or Newcastle or heading inland to places like Broken Hill and Richmond. The first Macedonian to settle in Rockdale was Risto Belcheff from the village
Capariin 1945. By 1946 a branch of the Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguewas opened in Sydney, it was known as "Vesela Makedonija". The "Vesela Makedonija" branch founded the Ilinden Soccer Club in the same year. In 1948 the group established a KUD also known as "Vesela Makedonija". From 1948 - 1953 the Macedonian Newspaper "Makedonska Iskra" was published in Sydney. From 1946 to 1960 Macedonian dances were often held in the Zora Hall. In 1957 the first Easter dance took place in the Trades Hall, the Russian Club was also a common hall for dances and celebrations. From 1960 onwards thousands of Macedonians from the Bitola and Prespa regions of Macedonia setlled in Sydney, most notably: Rockdale, Arncliffe, Bexley, Bansktown, Yagoona and Banskia. The Macedonian started to meet every Christmas Day in the Royal National Park, this tradition continues today. A second KUD, KUD Ilinden was set up. In 1966 and the only Macedonian Orthodox Cathedral in NSW and the first Macedonian Church in Sydney, Свети Кирил и Методиј/"Saints Cyril and Methodius" of Rosebery was built.
In 1976 the Macedonian Orthodox Church, Света Петка/"Saint Petka" of Rockdale was established by Macedonians from the village
Capari(Tsapari). In 1976 the Macedonian Ethnic School, 11th October was founded in Yagoona followed by a second in Canley Vale, St Nikola, in the following year. In 1977 the foundation stone was laid for Свети Никола/"Saint Nikola" of Cabramatta was laid. Soccer clubs such as Bankstown City Lions(Sydney Macedonia), Rockdale City Suns(Rockdale Ilinden), Yagoona Lions Soccer Club and Arncliffe Macedonia Soccer Club were all founded by Macedonians. The Macedonian Literary sociey of "Gligor Prličev" was founded in Sydney in 1978. The Society releases a quarterly journal called "Povod". The Society keeps a Macedonian language library. The society organises competitions for literature. And in 1985 the society published a volume of poems called "Vidici" (Vistas) with poems from 31 Australian Macedonian poets, this was done with the help of the Australia Council. Members of the Society have been invited to the prestigious Struga Poetry Evenings. Hill (1989)] In 1983 ties with Macedonia were strengthened as Bitola and Rockdale became sister cities.
In 1985 the Macedonian language newspaper "Makedonski Vestnik" was first printed in Rockdale. The First Macedonian Cultural Day was held in Rockdale in 1986. By 1987 two more ethnic schools had opened in Arncliffe and Rockdale. By 1989 nearly 20 additional KUD's were operating in Sydney they were; KUD Tanec, KUD Orče Nikolov, KUD
Mirče Acev, KUD Dame Gruev, KUD St Naum, KUD Cyril and Methodius, KUD Kitka, KUD Karpoš, KUD Makedonka, KUD Makedonski Orel, KUD Egejska Makedonija, KUD Makedonija and KUD Gjerdan. The "Australian-Macedonian Mountaineering Association" was established by Dimitar Illievski. After the Breakup of Yugoslaviain the early 1990s many more Macedonians began to immigrate to Sydney. Much of the second generation began to migrate westwards to Fairfield and Liverpool as they gained affluence. It soon emerged that there were three major concentrations of Macedonians in Sydney, the Rockdale-Hustrville Area, Bankstown-Yagoona and Bonnyrigg-Fairfield. Today over 20 Radio programs service the Macedonian community in Sydney. Another church Света Богородица Пречиста/"Holy Mother of God" or Liverpool has also opened and the Macedonian language is now taught at Macquarie University.
By the 1990s the Macedonian Community had constructed numerous halls the largest is the "Ilinden Centre" in Rockdale. Burek Shops, Kafani and Macedonian Associations have been the most prominent impact that Macedonian immigrants have had on the local community. The "Australian-Macedonian Mountaineering Association" operates from Holsworthy. Many pensioner groups and youth associations have been set up to cater for a diverse demographic. The most notable Macedonian soccer team in Sydney are the
Bankstown City Lions. The total number of Macedonian language speakers reached a peak in 2001 with 19,980 speakers, this fell to 19,033 speakers in 2006. The number of Macedonian born has fallen to 11,630 while the total number of people claiming Macedonian ancestry is 22,068. Community spokespersons claim that over 30,000 Macedonians reside in Sydney.
Richmond was one of the original Macedonian Settlements in Australia. The first Macedonian to come to Richmond was Steve Pandu, from the village
Kotori, Florina in 1927. He was joined by many other Macedonians and by 1938 they had established many farms and market-gardens. Soon more Macedonians came to establish orchard's in the Agnes Banksarea. Many family members were brought out from Yugoslavia and Greece. in 1946 a chapter of the Macedonian-Australian People's Leagueopened in Richmond. The Macedonians in Richmond were an integral part in Macedonian-Australian society. By 1950 a large concentration of Aegean Macedoniansfrom the village Kotori was present. After the Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguedecentralized the "Richmond Macedonian Association" was founded in 1961. Later still in 1980, this organization split half, forming the "Aegean Macedonian Social and Cultural Society" and the "Macedonian Cultural and Art Society, Pelister". The "Aegean Macedonian Social and Cultural Society" went on to raise over $100,000 to build their own cultural centre which was opened on 26th December 1983, the Macedonian Hall, Kotori. Today both groups still operate independently although talks of re-unification have been fruitless. In Richmond two KUDs were set up, KUD Pelister and KUD Kotori. Community spokespersons claim that there are over 700 Macedonians in the Richmond Area.
The community frequent the local Catholic church or the other Macedonian Churches in Sydney. Many Macedonians have large amounts of real-estate in the Richmond area. Macedonians have played an important part in shaping the history of Richmond.
The first Macedonian to arrive in the Illawarra was Ilčo Stojkov in 1924. He initially arrived to work in the Port Kembla Steelworks. It is estimated only a few hundred Macedonians immigrated to the Illawarra region in the pre-World War Two period. Despite this the first Macedonian cafe was founded in 1943 by Trajan Rakovitis from the village Rakovo/Lerin. in 1946 a branch of the
Macedonian-Australian People's Leagueopened in Port Kembla. Most of the Macedonians in Wollongong are post-war migrants from the Socialist Republic of Macedonia. From 1960 onwards thousands of Macedonians were employed in the Port Kembla Steelworks, they primarily settled in the nearby suburbs of Cringila, Warrawong and Coniston.
In 1971 the first "Sredselo" was introduced to Lake Heights by Lambe Nestoroski, Trajan Ristanovski and Sergija Sekuloski, it soon spread to Cringila. The first
Macedonian Orthodox Church, Свети Димитрија Солунски/"Saint Dimitrija of Solun" of Wollongong was built in 1972. The Macedonians founded many soccer clubs such as, [http://www.wufc.com.au/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1 Wollongong United] or "Wollongong Makedonija", Warrawong United , Lake Heights Junior Soccer Club, Cringila Lions Soccer Club, Coniston Macedonia Soccer Club, Shellharbour Barbarians and Pelister Illawarra Soccer Club. A friendly rivalry exists between Wollongong United whose fans base is primarily from Bitola, Cringila Lions Soccer Club whose fan base is primarily from Struga and Warrawong United whose supporters are primarily from the Mariovo area. A Macedonian Theatre was established in Cringila in the late 1970s, The "Macedonian theatre of the Illawarra" produced many notable performances and was later renamed after it's patron, Bill Neskovski. By the 1970s an estimated 85% of Cringila and 55% of Port Kembla, 35% of Coniston and Warrawong were Macedonians.
Kembla Grangein 2006. Two Macedonian language radio stations service the community along with a range of support services, the community has a quarterly journal called "KOMPAS".
Many of the first Macedonians would often go to work at the in the Newcastle Steelworks. By the early 1930s various "Kafani" had been established. As whole families began to immigrate many social and cultural amenities were established. In 1946 the Newcastle branch of the
Macedonian-Australian People's LeagueFrom the 1960s many Macedonians from the Socialist Republic of Macedoniacame to Newcastle. A KUD was established and the Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguehelped to engage the Macedonian Novacastrians with the rest of the Macedonian Australian community. Many would attend dances in the Trades Hall, Sydney. The first time the Macedonian language was broadcast in Australia occurred in Newcastle in 1949 as the local branch of the MAPL held a commemorative Ilinden broadcast.
After the decentralization of the
Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguethe Greek orientated, " Pavlos Melas" society was founded. This in turn was replaced by the "Macedonian Community of Newcastle". In 1970 the community built the Света Богородица/"Holy Mother of God" Macedonian Orthodox Church in Adamstown. The soccer clubs of Red Star, Newcastle-Macedonia, The Macedonian junior soccer club and Broadmeadow Magic were all founded by Macedonians. Another 3 KUD's, KUD Ilinden, KUD Bitola and KUD "Stiv Naumi" were all founded, the latter which still operates today. A "sredselo" was established as another church was constructed. In 1986 the first Macedonian Cultural Day was held and the " Goce Delcev" ethnic school was founded. The first non-English language Newspaper in Newcastle was the Macedonian paper "Kopnež" which was launched in 1984 by the "Macedonian Community of Newcastle". After the Breakup of Yugoslavia number of Macedonians came to the Newcastle region. In the early 1990s a branch of the VMRO party was set up. A Macedonian welfare centre was built on the site of the Macedonian Orthodox Church. Peter Hill estimates that there are 3,600 Macedonians in the Newcastle region. In 1996, 2,095 people spoke the Macedonian language at home compared with the 1,863 in 2006. In 2006 the number of people with Macedonian ancestry in the Newcastle are was 2,424 of whom Aegean Macedonians comprise 20%. [Hill (1989) p. 120]
;Canberra/QueanbeyanThe first Macedonians to arrive in the
Queanbeyanarea were Aegean Macedoniansfrom the Florina and Kastoria regions. They established market-gardens or became Eucalypt cutters near Braidwood. By 1920 an estimated 250 Macedonian had come to the Queanbeyan area. After the Second World Warand the Greek Civil Warmany Aegean Macedonians came to the Queanbeyan region. In 1946 a chapter of the Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguewas founded, it was called "Mladi Goce" after the name of the commander of the First Aegean Partisan Brigadewhich operated in Macedonia in 1944/1945. After the collapse of the Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguea split occurred in the community between pro-Greek and pro-Macedonian factions. The Greek-orientated "Society of Kastorians and Florinians" was set up in Queanbeyan. The Greek Orthodox Community in Queanbeyan is dominated by Macedonians. In 1969 the Macedonian Orthodox Church, Свети Илија/"Saint Ilija" of Queanbeyan was consecrated.
In 1983 the foundation stone for the Macedonian Orthodox Cathedral, Свети Климент Охридски/"Saint Kliment of Ohrid" in Red Hill was laid. The cathedral was designed by Macedonian Australian,
Vlase Nikoleski. As part of Macedonian Cultural Weeka performance is traditionally held in Canberra. The Department of Immigration and Ethnic Affairsestimated that there are 3,000 Macedonians in the Canberra/Queanbeyan region, of whom two-thirds are Aegean Macedonians. Two Cultural and Folkloric Groups, "KUD Razigrana Makedonka" and "KUD Egejska Makedonija" were founded in Queanbeyan, along with the Macedonian-Queanbeyan soccer Club. The Bitola social club or "Tumbe Cafe" was founded in Canberra. A third church was built in Canberra, Свети Климент Охридски/"Saint Kliment of Ohrid" in Narrabundah along with a Macedonian Ethnic School. Another Macedonian ethnic school, "Goce Delčev", operates in Queanbeyan. The number of Macedonian speakers in the Queanbeyan/Canberra region fell from 1,761 in 1996 to 1,550 in 2006. The total number of Macedonians in the Queanbeyan/Canberra region was 1,991 in 2006 of these only 927 were born in the Republic of Macedonia.
Macedonians in Victoria
Macedonians have been migrating to Victoria since late 1880s. Many "pečalbari" decided to settle and they travelled the countryside looking for work as itinerant labourers. Others established market gardens or small businesses in both rural and city areas. Many thousands of
Aegean Macedonianscame to Victoria in the post war period, today the largest group of Aegean Macedonians can be found in Victoria. During the 1960s and 1970's they were joined by thousands of Macedonians from the Socialist Republic of Macedonia. In 1991, Macedonia declared its independence from the Yugoslav federation. Business migrants from Macedonia soon began to arrive in Australia. By 1986 there were 24,090 Macedonian language speakers in Victoria, this reached a peak in 1996 with 32,949 people using the Macedonian language at home. As of 2006 37,434 people in Victoria had either full or partial ancestry.
In 1994 the Victorian state premier
Jeff Kennettordered government departments and agencies to use the term 'Slav Macedonian' to describe such people. This was done as a measure to shore up electoral support from Victoria's large Greek Australiancommunity [ [http://scatt.bilegrip.com/rjr2.htm "THE "RESIGN, JEFF!" REVIEW" 1994] ] . A court eventually repealed the decision in 1998 and since then the prefix "slavo-" has been dropped, on the basis of racial discrimination. [cite news|publisher = Sydney Morning Herald|date = 1998-04-21|title = Australian Macedonians a Unifying Title|first = Sylvia |last = Molitto]
A community of Macedonians has existed in
Sheppartonsince the 1930s. It is considered to be one of the original Macedonian settlements in Australia. Early pioneers from Aegean Macedoniabegan to come to Shepparton in the 1920s and 1930s. Many of them established Market Gardens. After the Second World Warand the Greek Civil Wara large number of Aegean Macedoniansemigrated to Shepparton. The Macedonians of Shepparton soon became an active force in the Macedonian-Australian People's Leagueand a branch was et up in Shepparton in 1946. Picnics, dances and functions were organised by the local branch. Although some Macedonians came to Shepparton in the 1960s and 1970's from Yugoslavia, the majority of the community were Aegean Macedonians. In the 1970s the St George, Greek Orthodox Church was built although the local congregation was primarily Macedonian. [Hill (1989) p.40] The "Florina Saturday School and Community Centre" was built in 1978 next to the church. The school is still open today and teaches both the Greek and Macedonian language. Shepparton formed sister city arrangements with the two Macedonian cities of Resen and Salonica. [Hill (1989) p. 108] In 1986 the first annual "Macedonian Cultural Day" was held. A 1966 figures puts the number of Macedonians in Shepparton at 600. In 1996, 322 people were speaking the Macedonian language at home, by 2006 this number had fallen to 213. In 2006, 254 people claimed Macedonian Ancestry of which 78 were born in the Republic of Macedonia.
The city of Werribee between Melbourne and Geelong was one of the original Macedonian settlements in Australia. The first Macedonians arrived in Weribee in 1924, and had great success growing peas, cauliflowers and tomatoes. Many also took to dairy farming and market-gardening. In 1934 the "Greek Macedonian Community of Weribee South" was founded among the Grecophile Macedonians. By 1940 many more had come to the Weribee area, a Macedonian cafe and restaurant had also been set up. In 1947 a branch of the
Macedonian-Australian People's Leagueopened in Weribee. It took an instrumental role in the Hospital Appeals. The branch went on to establish a local KUD and social group. After the Greek Civil Wara large influx of Aegean Macedonianscame to the Weribee area. They would form the backbone of the Macedonian community in Werribee. In the 1960s many Macedonains from Yugoslavia also came to Australia. By the 1970s a Macedonian hall had been set up and two more KUD's had been founded in the area. The Macedonians are well established in the Weribee area and have made a lasting contribution to the region. By 1991 there were 565 Macedonians speakers in Weribee, this rose to 964 in 2006. The number of people claiming Macedonian ancestry are 1,154.
Western Australia has traditionally had one of the largest Macedonian Australian communities in Australia. Thousands of pre-war immigrants came to the state in search of riches. Here they set up the Macedonian "villages" of Wanneroo and Upper Wanneroo. The Western Australian branches of the
Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguewere the driving force behind the movements inception. By this time the migrants had scattered to Manjimup, Geraldton and Kalgoorlie. The migrants were joined by post war Aegean Macedoniansand Yugoslav migrants. Many then headed north to Port Headland and Broome. After the breakup of Yugoslavia another wave of Macedonians came to Western Australia. By 2001 there 6,184 Macedonian speakers in Western Australia with 8,043 people claiming Macedonian Ancestry. The Macedonians of Western Australia have helped drive the state into the 21st century.
One of Australias oldest Macedonian communities can be found in Perth. It is said Boris Šmagranov arrived in Perth in 1908, the first Macedonian to do so. A steady wave of Macedonians began to arrive in Perth after the
First World War. Many of these were Aegean Macedoniansfrom the Florina, Kastoriaand Edessaregions. Many Macedonians left Perth for other areas where Macedonians had settled such as Manjimup, Balcatta, Geraldtonand Kalgoorlie. In the early 1920s the "Makedonski Dom" (Macedonian Home) was founded in Perth. This soon became the heart of the Macedonian community in Perth. Attempts to found a branch of the Macedonian Patriotic Organizationwere unsuccessful. A concentration of Macedonians had been set up in the Wannerooarea and soon it was declared a Macedonian village. The mainstay of the village was Market Gardening and small-scale farming. Through chain migration Perth soon became the largest centre of Macedonian immigration to Australia. The first genuine Macedonian settlement with wives and families in Australia was Wanneroo. By the 1930s there were over 150 Macedonians in the Wanneroo area. Another Macedonian village was soon founded at Upper Wanneroo or 27 Mile. Although the area was a swamp it was soon made suitable for farming.
In 1939 the "Edinstvo" group was founded which would dominated Macedonian social life for the next two decades. The "Edinstvo" group soon began to oragnise socials, functions and gatherings. The group's motto soon became "Слободна, Независна, Еднокупна Македонија" (Free, Independent and United Macedonia)". The group founded the "Edinstvo Perth Soccer Club" in the early 1940s. Community and youth groups were also founded. The first president of Edinstvo was George Dženev. On 18th September 1941 , Naume Sharin was elected president with Mick Veloskey and Pavle Bozhinov as secreteries. During
World War Twomany members of the Edinstvo group were called up to fight for their new mother country. After World War Two attempts by Edinstvo were made to create a unified Macedonian Australian Organisation. The Edinstvo group started radio sessions and eventually the group founded the "Makedonska Iskra" newspaper which went on to national distribution. On 24th and 25th August, 1946 the Edinstvo group held an inuagural conference for all the Macedonian organisations in Australian. It was decided that the Macedonian-Australian People's Leagueshould be founded. The Edinstvo group was soon incorporated as a branch of the new organisation. The returned members would go on to found the Macedonian Australian Ex-Servicemen's League in 1947. After the creation of the People's Republic of Macedoniamany Macedonians left to help rebuild the devastated country. While thousands of Aegean Macedonianrefugees came to Australia, of which a large proportion settled in Perth.
During the years of the
Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguethe Perth group was by far the most influential branch of the organisation. The group helped organize the "Miss Macedonia" competition and other events to raise money for the The Macedonian Hospital Appeals. During the first appeal the West Australian branches managed to raise over ₤5,500 for the Macedonian hospitals. In 1948 the Makedonska Iskra newspaper was moved to Sydney. The "Macedonian Soccer Club" which was disbanded during World War Two was eventually replaced by "Makedonija" in 1947, "Alexander" in 1954 and finally "Olympic" in 1956.
In 1948 the organisation took the initiative to build a Macedonian Hall in Perth. The contibued drive was to come from the "Macedonian Ladies Section" of the group. On 23rd May 1948 Mrs Diana Pappas was elected as President of the group. At this meeting it was agreed that a hall was needed for the "Edinstvo" group, "Macedonian Soccer Club" and the "Macedonian Ladies Section". In 1949 the group purchased a hall in Leederville with a deposit of ₤80. However there was friction within the group and the Hall was sold. The profits were put into buying a block of land in Church Street, Perth.
At the General Meeting of "Edinstvo" on 17th October 1954 in the Trades Hall the group passed the following resoloutions:
*1. "that a Macedonian centre be erected in Perth for the Macedonian Migrants"
*2. "that an amount of ₤10 be donated by each migrant from the age of 16 years without difference of men or women and be paid within a period of one year"
*3. "that the Hall and property be registered under the name of the Macedonian-Australian People's League, Branch "Edinstvo", Perth, W.A and that the hall be called the "Macedonian Hall"
*4. "that every Macedonian migrant settled in Western Australia who has paid his or her nominated ₤10 had rights in the hall"
By 1957 the group was financially secure and began to erect a hall on Church Street. The Perth community was seriously affected when the
Macedonian-Australian People's Leagueresolved to decentralize in 1957. In 1958 the "Stirling Soccer Club" was founded it was renamed to "West Perth Macedonia" in the 1960s. During this period "Edinstvo" was going through a period of structural changes and in 1960 it changed it's name to the "Macedonian Community of Western Australia" and plans were made for the future. In 1963 after the collapse of the Tobacco industry in Manjimup many Macedonians migrated to Perth. By this time many Macedonians from the People's Republic of Macedoniabegan to immigrate to Perth. In 1966 the foundation stone to the "Macedonian Community Centre" was laid and the building was completed in 1968. It include a chapel dedicated to Saint Nicholas. In 1969 a second level was added to the Community Centre.
In 1968 the "Vardar Club" (East Perth)" soccer club was founded. In 1969 the "Olympic" soccer team broke with the Macedonian community and established its club-rooms and grouds in Kingsway. Another Macedonian soccer club "Macedonia United" (West Perth)" was founded in 1970 under the auspices of the "Macedonian Community of Western Australia". The Community also went on to found a Basketball club and cricket club. In 1969 the first Macedonian Church in Western Australia was founded. The
Macedonian Orthodox ChurchСвети Никола/"Saint Nicholas" was consecrated on 6th April 1969. In 1969 the "Macedonian Community of Western Australia" founded the "Goce Delčev Macedonian Choir" and the KUD-Goce Delčev. The Vestnik/"Newspaper" was founded in 1971. It began as Mesečni Novini/"Monthly News" and then became "Newsletter of the Macedonian Communities in Australia". It printed mainly news from Western Australia in English and Macedonian.
In 1976 "The Macedonian Club" was founded on the site of the Macedonian Community Centre. Ever since it's foundation it has been the centre of the Macedonian community in Perth. During 1977 a split within the Saint Nicholas church community led some parishioners to leave the original church and purchase another church just 500 metres from the original "Saint Nicholas" church. This new church was also named the
Macedonian Orthodox Churchof Свети Никола/"Saint Nicholas". This church founded the KUD-Ilinden and other social groups. By 1983 the Vardar Club had acquired premises in North Perth. From here they are able organise socials, dances and picnics. They also founded the KUD-Vardar group along with other social events such as "Miss Macedonia (W.A)". In 1985 the "Macedonian Community of Western Australia" acquired 10 hectares of land in Balcatta. The development known as "Macedonia Park" was to include a nursing home, C grade hospital, a chapel, rectory, halls, bars and a wide range of sporting amenities. On 22nd May 1986 the sporting complex was officially opened by West Australian premier, Brian Burke. In 1985 the community had over 2,000 full or social members. Perth now has over 5 Macedonian clubs. Another social club the "Ilinden Club" was also founded the group went on to build a hall in North Perth.
During the early 1990s many Macedonian immigrate to Perth from the newly independent Republic of Macedonia. The "Macedonian United Organisation of Perth and WA Inc." was founded as a uniting organisation within Western Australia, the group has members from the "Macedonian Community of Western Australia", "Vardar Club", both Churches, the Romany Community and the Ilinden Club. The Church street was renamed "Macedonia Place" in recognistion of the great contribution that Macedonians had given to Perth. The "Macedonia Park" in Balcatta was expanded and a number of ethnic schools founded throughout Perth. Radio programs and KUD's were all expanded. By 1976 there were 3471 Macedonian speakers in Perth by 2001 this had risen to 5,772. 7,435 people claimed Macedonian ancestry in the 2006 census although community spokespersons put the number of Macedonians at over 12,000. Today the Macedonian community in Perth is one of the most influential in Australia and the Diaspora.
Wanneroo is one of the original Macedonian settlements in Australia. It was also the first "Macedonian village" in Australia. Approximately 25 kilometres from Perth it was an attractive location for many early Macedonian migrants. Many of these were
Aegean Macedoniansfrom the Florina and Kastoria regions. The first Macedonian to come to Wanneroo wad Stojan Angelcoff who immigrated to Australia in 1923. He later brought out his wife and many other relatives. Many of the early migrants made a living through Market Gardening and scrub clearing. Soon families and wives were brought out to the settlement and it was referred to as the "Macedonian Village". It would be these wives and families who would later go on to found the social and cultural organisations found in the area. By 1930 there were some 150 Macedonians in Waneroo which was steadily increasing. Another settlement was founded at Upper Waneroo. The are was well suited to growing vegetables in the summer.
By World War Two the Macedonian community of Perth was primarily centred on Waneroo. It was here that the "Edinstvo" group conducted many of it's early functions and picnics. As the Perth metropolitan area was expanded Waneroo was gradually absorbed as a suburb of Perth. The lack of immigrants in the 1960s and 1970s led to the ageing of the community. Although many others came to the Waneroo area in the 1980s and 1990s. Some of the early areas of Macedonian settlement are still dominated by Market-gardening and second and third generation Macedonians. Today it is estimated that the original Macedonian community of Wanneroo numbers over 400 persons.
Manjimup is considered as one of the original Macedonian settlements in Australia. One of the first Macedonians to arrive in Manjimup was Risto Marin in 1924. It was here he established a market garden before returning to Macedonia. Many of the original Macedonian immigrants ended up cutting railway sleepers or scrub-clearing. Eventually permanent immigrants arrived and many market gardens were set up. Many of these immigrants were
Aegean Macedoniansfrom Greece, especially after the village of Babčor was destroyed by American Bombers in 1948. Many people from Babčor came to Australia and settled in Manjimup. Macedonians played an instrumental role in the foundation of the Tobacco industry in Manjimup. Other notable Macedonians who had arrived by 1930 included Risto Numev, Lazo Miče, The Milentises and Kole Palasin who would go on to have great influence in the regions local tobacco industry. A Greek entrepreneur, Peter Michelidis would turn the tobacco venture into a major industry of the 1930s, 40s and 1950s. At the height of the tobacco industry there were 1,600 Macedonians in Manjimup and the industry was worth ₤500,000 per annum to the district. Although in 1963 the industry collapsed when government regulations and competition seriously damaged the growers. It was said that many Anglo-Australians gloated at the ruin of the Macedonians, but in fact many Australians were also affected and a local department store closed within months of the tobacco collapse. Many Macedonians left the area to other tobacco growing areas or to Perth.
After the collapse of the Tobacco industry Market-gardening had become the mainstay of Macedonian life in Manjimup. In 1942 the Macedonians in Manjimup created the "Sloboda" organisation. In 1947 it evolved to become a branch of the
Macedonian-Australian People's League. It soon became the centre of the Community. The "Sloboda" organisation remained even after the dentralisation of the Macedonian-Australian People's League. A film based on the experiences of Stase Manov, a Macedonian in Manjimup, called "Stari Kraj" (Old Country) was shown on Yugoslavian television. It was a great success. The community which had originally held dances and functions in tobacco sheds began to use the Town Hall. They have always been staunch supporters of the "Macedonian Community of Western Australia", whereas many Macedonians in Perth were against its inception. From 1970 the population of Macedonians had stabilised at 350 from a peak of 1,600. In 1982, 2.5 acres were donated to the community in Ipsen Street. It was here that the community built the Macedonian Community Centre which was blessed by Father Petre Nanevski from Perth on August 3rd 1983. The hall was officially opened on 3rd May 1987 by the then premier of Western Australia, Brian Burke. Many Macedonians from Manjimup would go onto to play for the Macedonian soccer teams in Perth or Geraldton.
A KUD was organised in the hall and functions and weddings were also held in the Macedonian Community Centre. The KUD often performs in statewide multicultural events. The community is still present in Manjimup as the second and third generation Macedonians take control of the community. Many people still speak the Macedonian language and follow Macedonian customs. Many have gone on to manage and own business' where their fathers were not accepted even as labourers. In 1991, 185 people claimed to speak the Macedonian language in the Manjimup area by 2006 this had fallen to 98. Although in 2006 there were 175 people of Macedonian ancestry down from the 200 in 2001. The number of Macedonian born has traditionally been low denoting the presence of Aegean Macedonians in Manjimup. The community was recently visited by the Macedonian Ambassador to Australia, which shows that Macedonians are still present in the Manjimup area [ [http://southwest.thewest.com.au/regionals.aspx?MenuID=360&ContentID=50873 Lucky eight a great celebration : southwest.thewest.com.au ] ] The Macedonians have left a lasting imprint on the Manjimup community.
South Australia is home to a small but compact Macedonian community. The first Macedonians were scrub clearers Ceduna or grape-pickers in the
Riverlandregion. Permamnent immigrants established market gardens in places like Virginia, Fulham Gardens and Flinders Park. Soon a community of Aegean Macedonianshad established themsleves in South Australia, most notably in Fulham Gardens. "Kafani" were established by Macedonians and they soon became the original meeitng place for the Macedonian community. In 1947 a chapter of the Macedonian-Australian People's Leagueknown as " Alexander the Great" opened in South Australia. Its first president was Vasil Apostol. In 1947 the group raised over £350 for the Macedonian Hospital Appeal.cite book|last = Price|first = Charles|title = Southern Europeans in Australia|location = Melbourne|year = 1963] In 1951 Kosta Radin and Kosta Kiosses founded the "Alexander the Great Youth association". In the 1960s the Pro-Greek, Lerin association was founded and in the 1970s the pro-Yugoslavian, Makedonka organisation was also founded, they soon dissolved. After the decantralization of the Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguethe "Macedonian Orthodox Community of South Australia" was founded in 1957. In 1967 the group constructed the first Macedonian Hall which soon became the center of Macedonian social activities in Adelaide.
On the 28th April, 1968 a memorial to the great freedom fighter
There has traditionally been a small Macedonian community in Queensland. Relatively few immigrants arrived before the Second World War. In the late 1940’s the Brisbane Branch of the
Macedonian-Australian People's Leaguewas founded. After Crabbes Creek was devastated by a cyclone in the 1960’s more Macedonians came to Brisbane. There were relatively few immigrants in Queensland until many Macedonians already in Australia decided to immigrate north. Despite this by 1986 there were still only 376 Macedonians in Queensland, although the community was still growing. Plans for a church in the Gold Coast were founded and planning soon began. A soccer club, “Brothers United” was founded by the community in the late 1980’s. It was decided that the first ever Macedonian hall built in Crabbes Creek should be sold and the proceeds go towards founding Sveta Bogorodica church. In the 1990s a Macedonian Orthodox churchwas founded. Света Богородица/Sveta Bogorodica soon became the center of the Macedonian community in Queensland. Soon afterwards a KUD and an Ethnic School were also set up. In late 2002 an appeal to build build a second church began. Construction of the Света Недела/’’Sveta Nedela’’ church soon began. An Australia wide cultural day was held on the Gold Coast during the Christmas of 2006 to help raise funds for the Church. It was a success with Macedonians from all parts of Australia travelling to the event. As of mid-2008 the church is nearing completion. Today Queensland has the fastest growing Macedonian community in Australia. Community spokespersons claim that there are over 4000 Macedonians in Queensland. Although only 927 Macedonians speakers were recorded in the 1996 census and 1,144 in 2006. In 2006 1,829 persons claimed Macedonian Ancestry.
The Aegean Macedonian people have had a long history with Australia. In 19th Century pečalba, working away from home, was a widespread Macedonian custom. [Hill(1989) p. 18] The first Aegean Macedonian was Stojan Kenkov who came to Australian in 1914. Pre-World War Two migration occurred in two waves: the first, in 1924, when the USA imposed heavy immigration restrictions and the second, after 1936, when the fascist regime of Ioanis Metaxas in Greece took power. The third wave occurred after the Greek Civil War when many ethnic Macedonians fled Greece. Charles Price estimates that by 1940 there were 670 Ethnic Macedonians from
Florinaand 370 from Kastoriaresident in Australia. Peter Hill also estimates a figure of 50,000 Aegean Macedonians (including second generation and excluding the aegean Macedonians who identify as Greeks). [Hill (1989) p. 123] 2.5% of adherents to the Macedonian Orthodox Church in Australia were born in Greece while 3,152 speakers of the Macedonian language were born in Greece and 2,919 people born in Greece claimed ethnic Macedonian ancestry or roughly 3.6% of the total population group.
Aegean Macedonians were essential in the establishment of the Macedonian Australia People league ("Macedonian: Makedono-Avstraliski Naroden Sâjuz") which dominated ethnic Macedonian life throughout the 1940s and 1950s. They then went on to establish organizations and events such as Macedonian Cultural Week, Preston Makedonija, Makedonska Iskra, Macedonian Community of S.A, Nova Makedonija and many others. There are Aegean Macedonian minorities in Richmond,
The Waves of Immigrants
The History of Ethnic Macedonian
immigration to Australiais often classified in various waves. The emergence of these waves often had to with Geo-political circumstances in Europe and especially the Balkans.
*The First Wave: The First Wave of Macedonian Immigration to Australia occurred in 1924 when the
United Statesimplemented tougher immigration policies (1924-1930)
*The Second Wave: After the
Metaxasregime took control of Greece in 1936 many Macedonians were victimised, persecuted and discriminated against This cause an exodus of Ethnic Macedonians from Greece. (1936-1941)
*The Third Wave: Following the Collapse of the DSE, the National Liberation Front and the Communist Party of Greece (KKE). Thousands of Ethnic Macedonians fled or were evacuated from Greece. Thousands of these would eventually make their way to Australia joined by refugees from the
Second World War. (1946-1950's)
*The Fourth Wave: After Emigration restriction's were lifted in Yugoslavia, tens of thousands of Macedonians emigrated to Australia. Many of these returned to Yugoslavia. This was the largest wave of Macedonian immigration to Australia. Most of these immigrants went to work in Industrial Centres such as Wollongong, Newcastle and Geelong. (1960-1990)
*The Fifth Wave: The Fifth Wave occurred after the
Breakup of Yugoslavia, thousands of skilled migrants came to Australia. Many of these migrants were educated and were professionals. (1991-Present Day)
Migrants from the First Half of the
20th Centurywere mainly Aegean Macedonians. Immigrants from 1960 have generally been Ethnic Macedonians from the Socialist Republic of Macedonia.
Many Macedonians in Australia are involved with
Soccerand other sports. Macedonian Australians have helped to make soccer one of the most popular sports in Australia. Some of the various clubs they have helped to establish are:
;New South Wales:Sydney
Bankstown City Lionsor "Sydney Macedonia":* Rockdale City Sunsor "Rockdale Ilinden":*Arncliffe Macedonia Soccer Club:*Yagoona Lions Soccer Club.
:Illawarra:*Wollongong United or "Wollongong Makedonija":*Warrawong United:*Lake Heights Junior Soccer Club:*Cringila Lions Soccer Club:*Coniston Macedonia Soccer Club:*Pelister Illawarra Soccer Club
:Newcastle:*Broadmeadow Magic or "Newcastle Macedonia soccer Club":*Macedonia Junior Soccer Club
:Queayanbeyan:*Macedonian-Queanbeyan Soccer Club
Preston Lions FCor "Preston Makedonia SC" ("originally "the Makedonia Soccer Club"):* Altona Magicor "Altona Vardar":*Sydenham Park Soccer Club
:*West Perth or "Macedonia United":*East Perth or "The Vardar Club":*Stirling Lions or "Stirling Makedonia"
Most Macedonians in Australia are followers of the Macedonian Orthodox Church. Although there are many
Macedonian Muslimsand people who follow other branches of Christianity. In 1996 there were 53,152 followers of the Macedonian Orthodox Church, in 2001 there were 53,244 adherents. in 2006 this number had fallen to 48,084 people. There is a diocese of the Macedonian Orthodox Church for Australia and New Zealand. The Macedonian Orthodox Church is often shortened to MPC.
There are over 40 Macedonian Orthodox Churches in Operation throughout Australia, 3 monasteries and two Cathedrals. Most of them fall under the jurisdiction of the Macedonian Orthodox Church - Diocese for Australia and New Zealand. The monasteries are MPM- Свети Прохор Пчински/"Saint Prohor Pcinski" of Donnybrook, MPM- Свети Наум Охридски/"Saint Naum of Ohrid" of Kinglake and MPCO- Света Петка/"Saint Petka" of Kembla Grange. The Cathedrals are Macedonian Orthodox Cathedral- Свети Климент Охридски/"Saint Kliment of Ohrid" of Red Hill and Macedonian Orthodox Cathedral- Свети Кирил и Методиј/"Saints Cyril and Methodius" of Roseberry (autocephalous).
Many of the original churches established by Macedonians fell under the jurisdiction of the Bulgarian or
Greek Orthodox Churches. In 1950 the "Macedonian Church of St Cyril and Methodius" was founded under the Bulgarian Ortohdox Diocese. Another Macedonian Orthodox Church "St George" was founded in 1959 before full Autocephaly had been declared. In Adelaide a "Macedo-Bulgarian Orthodox Church was also founded under the jurisdiction fo the Bulgarian Diocese. The Greek Orthodox Community of Sheppartonis primarily Macedonian.
Although Most Macedonians are adherents of the Macedonian Orthodox Church many follow a different faith. In Melbourne there are two Macedonian Protestant Churches; the Macedonian Church in East Preston (
Uniting Church) and Macedonian Baptist Community of Regent. There is another Macedonian Baptist Church in Sydney. Another Macedonian Methodist Community was established in Melbourne.
List of notable Macedonian Australians
Artists and media
Republic of Macedonia
United Macedonian Diaspora
Macedonian-Australian People's League
Preston Lions FC
Bankstown City Lions
Broadmeadow Magic FC
Rockdale City Suns
Australian Bureau of Statistics: www.abs.gov.au
*cite book|last = Hill|first = Peter|title = The Macedonians in Australia|publisher = Hesperian Press|year = 1989
* [http://www.macedonianhr.org.au/ Macedonian Human Rights Committee - Australia]
* [http://www.macedonianemb.org.au/index_MKinAUS.html Macedonian Embassy in Australia]
* [http://www.mpceanz.org.au/ Macedonian Orthodox Church - Australia and New Zealand]
* [http://www.makbiz.com.au/ Australian Macedonian Business Directory]
* [http://www.radio.sbs.com.au/language.php?page=info&language=Macedonian SBS- Macedonian language program]
* [http://www.maso.com.au/home.html Macedonian Nighlife and Culture Club]
* [http://www.migrationheritage.nsw.gov.au/readingroom/reports/npws/index.html A Multicultural Landscape: National Parks and the Macedonian Experience]
* [http://www.mawasydney.com.au/ Macedonian Australian Welfare Association of Sydney Inc.]
* [http://www.australianmacedonianweekly.com Australian Macedonian Weekly, the Macedonian Newspaper for Macedonian Australians]
* [http://www.sportscentreoz.com/qmdg.htm Macedonian Dance Group in Queanbeyan, KUD Razigrana Makedonka]
* [http://www.fomkud.org.au/ Federation of Macedonian cultural and artistic societies in Victoria]
* [http://macedonian.welfare.org.au/ Port Kembla Macedonian Welfare Association Inc.]
* [http://www.communitywebs.org/MacedonianCommunitySA/default.htm Macedonian Community of Adelaide and South Australia]
* [http://freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~aliens/chapter_5.htm The Macedonians of Crabbes Creek]
* [http://www.mpco-pert.cjb.net/ St Nikola Macedonian Orthodox Church, Perth]
* [http://www.wa.macedonian.org.au// Macedonian - West Australian Business and Economic Forum]
* [http://www.pollitecon.com/html/macedonian_spark/index.html Makedonska Iskra Newspaper]
* [http://www.stirlinglions.com.au/home.htm Stirling Lions Soccer Club]
* [http://wufc.com.au/ Wollongong United Soccer Club]
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