Migration Museum, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything

Migration Museum, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia

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The Adelaide Migration Museum is, funnily enough, a museum focussing on migration and located in Adelaide, the capital city of South Australia. The museum is part of the History Trust of South Australia and is situated in the centre of Adelaide at 82 Kintore Avenue (Kintore Avenue is right in the heart of the city and joins major road North Terrace). The museum's central location, free admission1 and convenient opening hours2 make it a huge attraction for both tourists and Adelaide locals. It is housed in a restored building that once used to be Australia's Destitute Asylum.

The migration museum tells the story of countless immigrants to Australia from the First Fleet until the present day. The main exhibitions are in various different galleries, all connected in a more or less chronological order. Although the museum is small, lots of text is packed into each gallery (probably too much for young children to read, but containing a wealth of information for those who have enough time to go through it all). The text explains about the boat trips from Europe to Australia, about early settlers and other relevant information, then proceeds on to different types of migration, mainly in the 20th Century, including refugees from both World Wars. The museum tries to give an accurate and unbiased account of migration into Australia, and does not try to avoid some of Australia's more unpleasant history (such as the historical White Australia Policy). The museum has many 'primary sources' in the forms of records, artefacts and both spoken and written witness testimonies from those who remember migrating to Australia. In addition, there are areas where visitors can write their own feedback and opinions on contentious issues. Samples of these are regularly placed on boards for new visitors to read (and then add their own responses!). There is a section providing information on the history of the building, as well as changing exhibitions focussing on one particular nation or group and their migration experiences.

There is a small shop contained within the museum, mainly selling postcards as well as a few other migration-themed souvenirs. It is also possible to get your name engraved on a brick outside in the courtyard; you pay a lot of money, and your brick appears in a special area for bricks, featuring your name, background and date of arrival in Australia.

The migration museum holds a lot of important and interesting Australian (and international!) history. It's a great place to go if you're visiting Adelaide or if you have an association with migration.

1However, gold coin donations are appreciated to help keep the museum running.2The museum is open from 10am to 5pm on weekdays and 1pm to 5pm on weekends and public holidays. It is only closed for two days of the year; Christmas and Good Friday.

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