Author Topic: Germans speaking English  (Read 264 times)

Offline iwccc

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Germans speaking English
« on: Thursday 27 August 20 08:51 BST (UK) »
Can anyone advise me as to what was the criteria when emigrating to Australia from Germany as far as speaking English was concerned.  Were you allowed to come with no English or would you have been expected to be able to speak some English before arriving.  When you did arrive how did you go about getting somewhere to live and work?  My research is for the Toelle family who arrived in 1855 on the ss Egmont. thank you

Offline Billyblue

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Re: Germans speaking English
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 02 September 20 08:25 BST (UK) »
In 1855 there were probably no criteria, because Australia needed hardworking migrants etc.

Nowadays, people can migrate without the language, but to become citizens they should be able to speak English to a certain degree.
There is actually quite a debate going on in the Letters to the Editor in the Brisbane paper this last week or so, about migrants who have lived here for years and still can't speak English (or Australian! ;D). With a lot of criticism for them not learning the language.
About 10 years ago I was a volunteer tutor for English as a Second Language classes at a local TAFE [Technical and Further Education] College.  We had students from all sorts of countries - Pakistan, Ethiopia, China etc - and for some of them it was easy and for some it was almost impossible.  And that's because some people find foreign languages easier than others.  Also, if you've ever learnt a foreign language, you'll know that it's much easier to understand the language than it sometimes is, to find the right words or syntax to speak it correctly or so that people can understand you.
Some people forget that.
Dawn M
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Online IgorStrav

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Re: Germans speaking English
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 02 September 20 09:00 BST (UK) »
One thing which did apply for many migrants/refugees arriving in a country with a different language is that there were often communities from their own country already there to help with accommodation and jobs.

Do you know where your Toelle family lived in Australia when they arrived, and have you been able to look at their neighbours?

My own great grandparents came from Brussels in the 1870's to the East End of London, and in one census nearly the whole street shared both origin and occupation.

And the same applied in the US, where much of the country was built by migrants from Europe.
Pay, Kent. 
Barham, Kent. 
Cork(e), Kent. 
Cooley, Kent.
Barwell, Rutland/Northants/Greenwich.
Cotterill, Derbys.
Van Steenhoven/Steenhoven/Hoven, Nord Brabant/Belgium/East London.
Kesneer Belgium/East London
Burton, East London.
Barlow, East London
Wayling, East London
Wade, Greenwich/Brightlingsea, Essex.
Thorpe, Brightlingsea, Essex


Offline iwccc

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Re: Germans speaking English
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 02 September 20 13:22 BST (UK) »
Thank you Billyblue,  I have some idea of what is required today.....I was really looking for clues as to how it would have been back in 1855.   I appreciate your thoughts. Regards

Offline iwccc

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Re: Germans speaking English
« Reply #4 on: Wednesday 02 September 20 13:26 BST (UK) »
Thank you Igor Strav, The Toelle family lived in Sydney, NSW.  thank you for the idea of searching neighbours - good thought!  I will try and track down neighbours from the census.   This man seemed to get work, was later naturalised and did quite well for himself in. the building trade.  I appreciate your input.