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Dutch Emigration to Australia

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Dutch Emigration to Australia

The history of the Dutch and Australia began in 1606 with Captain Willem Janszoon, a Dutch seafarer, landing on the Australian mainland, the first European to do so.

The VOC (Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie), or the Dutch East India Company, operated mainly from Batavia, modern day Jakarta. The journey from the Netherlands to the Dutch East Indies would take more than a year by the traditional route taken by seafarers, but after the discovery of the Roaring forties wind by Dutch captain Hendrick Brouwer, the voyage could be cut short but a number of months if followed properly. However, miscalculations and errors in crew et cetera made it easy for ships to become lost on this newer course. Some ships (the exact figures unknown), travelled too far east and sighted the west coast of Australia. A number of these ships became wrecked upon the reefs or cliffs that were known hazards of the "Southland". Famous examples of these ill-fated ships include the Batavia, Zuytdorp, and Zeewijk. After the wrecking of the Batavia, a murderous mutiny was carried out under the orders of a psychopathic doctor from Haarlem, Jeronimus Corneliszoon.

A number of Dutch people from the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) found their way to Australia during World War II and fought with Allied forces. The Netherlands East Indies government operated from Australia during the war. Eleven Free Dutch Submarines operated out of Fremantle after the invasion of Java, the joint No. 18 (Netherlands East Indies) Squadron RAAF, established in 1942 and No. 120 formed at Canberra, was a combined Dutch and Australian Squadron with dual command, it used B-25 Mitchell bombers, paid for by the Dutch Government before the war. No. 18 later moved to northern Australia, No. 120 to Western Australia and later transferring overseas. . https://s3.amazonaws.com/photos.geni.com/p13/48/be/c2/6d/5344483beba2404c/gag59xac_large.jpg

In 1954 the 50,000th Dutch migrant arrived; Maria Scholte is to the right of the picture.

After World War II, Australia launched a massive immigration programme, believing that having narrowly avoided a Japanese invasion, Australia must "populate or perish." Hundreds of thousands of displaced Europeans migrated to Australia and over 1,000,000 British Subjects immigrated under the Assisted Migration Scheme, colloquially becoming known as Ten Pound Poms. The scheme was initially open to citizens of all Commonwealth countries and after the war, was gradually extended to other countries such as the Netherlands and Italy. Dutch settlers in Australia arrived as part of Australia's post World War II assisted migration program, and from Indonesia after it achieved independence.

The qualifications were straightforward: migrants needed to be in sound health and under the age of 45 years. There were initially no skill restrictions, although under the White Australia Policy, people from mixed race backgrounds found it very difficult to take advantage of the scheme.

Notable Australians of Dutch ancestry

  • Tony Abbott, Prime Minister of Australia
  • Gordon Barton
  • Beeb Birtles
  • Andrew Bolt
  • Nigel Boogaard
  • Stephanie Brantz
  • Paul Cox
  • Tom Cooper
  • Guillaume Daniel Delprat
  • Luke De Vere
  • Edward Duyker
  • Eric Roozendaal
  • Joanna Gash
  • Sara Groen
  • Rolf de Heer
  • Marlo Hoogstraten
  • Annita Keating van Iersel
  • Ben Kersten
  • Anthony LaPaglia
  • Jonathan LaPaglia
  • Adrian Leijer
  • Dirk Nannes
  • Trevor Marmalade
  • Mark Tonelli
  • Sophie Van Den Akker
  • Paul van der Haar
  • Nathan van Berlo
  • Adam van Dommele
  • Jack van Tongeren
  • Tammy van Wisse
  • Harry Vanda
  • Richie Vandenberg
  • Johnny Young
  • Alexander Smits
  • Harry van der Sluis (Roy Rene, known as "Mo")

Please use timeline events to record Immigration details