Chinese Fortunes in colonial Australia.
From 1852, news of the gold rushes in Victoria and New South Wales spread throughout the southern provinces of China, bringing the promise of great prosperity.
Australia became known as New Gold Mountain or Dai Gam San. Thousands of Chinese men, and a handful of Chinese women, journeyed here hoping to make their fortunes. They came from a variety of cultural and economic backgrounds, and brought with them a wide range of skills and traditions.
Not all came to mine, for example some were merchants, entrepreneurs, medical practitioners, and farmers keen to establish themselves in lucrative new markets, where they prospered and contributed greatly to the developing Australian social, cultural and economic landscape.
Exceptionally civic minded, Chinese sojourners and settlers also raised funds through spectacular parades and carnivals to build hospitals and benevolent asylums to the benefit of all.
Explore the stories of these remarkable pioneers, and the hardships they overcame to make their Chinese Fortunes.
In the past thirty years, our understanding of the history of Chinese Australians has been remade. Thanks to a growing community of researchers and historians we now have new insights into the political, economic and cultural dimensions of Chinese Australian experiences. MADE’s aim is to shine a new light on these stories and demonstrate how they have helped shape contemporary Australia.
Cash Brown, MADE Curator