• Photograph 7501022
  • Photograph 7501037

As with other milestone migrant arrivals, there were grand plans to welcome Antonia Bellomarino and her family. However, their arrival was also eventful in unanticipated ways. The Minister for Immigration, Alexander Downer, scheduled to greet them at Station Pier, was running more than an hour late. The Italian Consul-General, Dr Vittorio Strigari, had sailed out to meet the Neptunia as it entered Port Phillip Bay, butmissed greeting the vessel entirely, and had to turn and chase the liner back to Station Pier. Alexander Downer presented Antonia with a set of silver cutlery which the family still owns. Antonia brought her Singer sewing machine from Italy so she could continue to work as a dressmaker in Australia.

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