daughter of Spinalba and Nicola D'Antonio, from Montenerodomo.
I had an uncle who migrated to Australia after the first world war. When he first arrived in Australia, he had work but he didn't make a lot of money. It was also the time of the Great Depression and life was difficult for all Australians. Each week when he went to buy food from the corner shop, he never had enough money to pay for it all. So he would go to buy bread and milk and the shopkeeper would say, 'Never mind, one day you will pay...' and added the items to a growing list. This happened for three or four years.
Then my uncle decided he would have to do more so, along with six other Italians, he went to Kalgoorlie to the gold mines. No-one knows quite what they found but whatever it was it was shared equally among the seven of them.
It must have been a large amount because the owner of a bus company approached my uncle to see if he wanted to buy a half share in the company. Instead he bought two houses, one in South Terrace that was two storeys high and had a shop that he rented out, and a smaller one where he and his wife lived because he was a simple man with simple tastes. My uncle paid the man who owned the corner shop and he lived off the money from his properties and what was in the bank for the rest of his life. But he was a generous man and sponsored many of his nephews and nieces to come out to Australia: maybe thirty of them.
As well, everyone from Montenerodomo and Pizzaferrato who came to Australia by boat got to eat at his home. Even the ones who got off the ship in Fremantle (Perth) for just six or seven hours were picked up at the port and taken to my uncle's home for a meal. There they would find a huge spread of meat and pasta, salad, vegetables, fruit, cakes, wine and beer...as much as you could eat. It also gave his paesane a chance to catch up with the people who had migrated before them.
My uncle also had many trips back to Italy.
During the second world war, like all Italians in Australia, my uncle was locked up in a camp and he said it was terrible: cramped and there was very little food.
Testimonianza di Anna Rossi