Emigration from the Central Oder River Basin to South Australia in the 19th century. An outline
The text is a comprehensive study of the 19th-century emigration to South Australia from the Central Oder River Basin, which at the time constituted the borderland of Prussian provinces
Schlesien, Posen and Brandenburg. It describes the reasons of emigration, its historic progress, socio-demographic structure and its significance for the economic and cultural development of South Australia.
The author uses authentic materials from public archives (Polish, German and Australian) and from private collections (gathered by the descendants of the emigrants). She also used German and Australian magazines and newspapers from the 19th century.
From its beginnings, the history of South Australia has been related to the presence of Prussian immigrants, including those who came from the Central Oder River Basin (Germans and Poles). Since the early years of settlement they worked mainly as farmers and craftsmen. They funded the Lutheran Church in Australia, established the first Polish Church and school as well as first German schools on the continent.
In terms of sheer numbers the immigrants from the Central Oder River Basin were not a large group, but they played an important role in the shaping of the socio-cultural identity of South Australia.