From War To Whittlesea: Oral Histories of Macedonian Child Refugees
By Macedonian Welfare Workers Network of Victoria
From War to Whittlesea is a book of recollections and reflections -
dramatic, insightful, passionate and compassionate - from some of the
28,000 Macedonian child refugees who were evacuated from their homes
in northern Greece between 1948 and 1949 during the Macedonian struggle
for independence in the Greek Civil War.
The story of the child refugees or detsa begaltsi remains
one of the most powerful events of modern Macedonian history and its
effects are still felt in Macedonian communities around the world.
Five of the oral histories are from child refugees, the sixth is from
the mother of one of the children. The six individuals are from the
villages of Bapchor, Lagen, Neret and Krushoradi. All are now Australian
Each story is made all the more moving by the fact that the refugees
were only children. The stories tell of village life before the war,
the destruction wrought by Greek soldiers and their American and British
allies, separation from parents and family, the journey to Eastern Europe,
growing up in foreign lands, and their eventual arrival in Australia
and how they rebuilt their lives here.
Their experiences are similar to those witnessed recently in Bosnia
and Kosovo; yet the Macedonian refugee experience from northern Greece
predates these events by 50 years and is still unfolding as the refugees,
now in their 50s and 60s, use their growing maturity and insight to
understand the events and experiences that changed the lives of all
Macedonians from northern Greece.
The book is $18 including postage and GST in Australia, overseas airmail
From War To Whittlesea, Paperback, 96 pages, Four colour celloglazed
cover, 30 photographs and illustrations, Published by Pollitecon Publications
1999, ISBN 978-0-9586789-2-6
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