Exhibition

Welcome Wall

Recording life-changing journeys

A family walks along the Welcome Wall.

The Welcome Wall stands in honour of all those who have migrated from around the world to live in Australia.

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  • About

    About

    In one of history's great migrations, more than ten million people have crossed the world to settle in Australia. Was your family among them? The Welcome Wall stands in honour of all those who have migrated to live in Australia with registered names permanently engraved in bronze.


    Registering names on the Wall

    Today’s Australians are invited to pay tribute to migrant family members and friends by having their names inscribed on the bronze-panelled wall. For each name, people can contribute a brief (150-word) story about the person being honoured to describe their journey. The name appears on the wall and their brief story is made available on a kiosk in the foyer of the museum and on the Online Welcome Wall.

    Register now or learn more about registering

    Unveiling ceremonies

    The museum holds regular unveiling ceremonies to commemorate new registrants who have inscribed their family names on the wall. See our Welcome Wall Unveiling page for the latest dates.

    Twice a year new panels of names are unveiled with a ceremony. The next ceremony is planned for September/October 2018. It is a free public event and all are welcome to join. Register now to have your name on the Welcome Wall and attend the next unveiling ceremony.

    Visiting the Wall

    The arrival of waves of migrants by boat and plane is one of the major themes in Australia’s history. Located outdoors on the museum's northern boundary, the wall faces Darling Harbour and Pyrmont Bay where some of the many new settlers arrived.

    Accessible all year-round, take a stroll along the bronzed panels and learn more about the migration experience as well as reading the names engraved.

    Exploring the Online Welcome Wall

    Find a name and read the stories of people who struggled against poverty and of people who struck it rich – from involuntary migrants such as convicts from the First Fleet, unaccompanied migrant children in the Big Brother Movement, post-war refugees and migrants of more recent times who’ve chosen modern Australia as a place to settle. You can also use the Welcome Wall kiosk in the museum's foyer to search and read people's stories.

    Contact Us

    Phone: +61 (02) 9298 3667
    Email: welcomewall@anmm.gov.au

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  • How to Register

    How to Register

    The Welcome Wall is a permanent reminder of Australia’s heritage and the values of tolerance and unity in diversity. Registering a name provides a unique opportunity to honour our immigrant forebears, family members and friends.

    Registration information

    • Registering one person or a family name costs $150 (including GST) per person.
    • For a name to appear on the museum’s Welcome Wall, the person must have been born overseas and settled in Australia.
    • You can register with as little information as the person's name and place of origin.
    • Once you have registered, you can add a 150 word story about the person, along with information about their arrival and other personal details. This optional information is held on our database and appears on the Online Welcome Wall. It can be submitted at any time.
    • You can buy a gift registration for a friend or family member.
    • If you are registering a living person other than yourself, a permission for inclusion letter will be sent with the acknowledgement letter. Once approval has been received their name will be added.
    • New panels of names are unveiled in a special ceremony at the museum twice a year. If your inscription is due to be unveiled you will be notified in writing prior to the ceremony. Ceremonies are free public events and all are welcome to join us.

    How to register

    Register online or to make an enquiry please contact the Welcome Wall Assistant.
    Phone: +61 (02) 9298 3667
    Email: welcomewall@anmm.gov.au
    Or come into the Museum and ask for a registration form from our front of house staff.

    How to update an existing registration

    Please contact the Welcome Wall Assistant:
    Phone: +61 (02) 9298 3667
    Email: welcomewall@anmm.gov.au

    Frequently Asked Questions

    What details about the person appear on the Welcome Wall?

    The Welcome Wall records names of individuals only (note titles and awards such as Dr, Mrs and OAM cannot be inscribed on the Wall). All additional information submitted, such as date of arrival, can be viewed on the Online Welcome Wall (which is also shown in the museum’s foyer).

    Are names listed alphabetically?

    Names are listed on the Welcome Wall in the order that they have been registered and not alphabetically. This way a family or group of people who have registered at the same time can appear together on the Wall. On arrival at the museum, you can use the Kiosk in the foyer to look up your registration details on the Online Welcome Wall. The panel and line location of your name will be displayed and you can walk around to the Wall to see it.

    How do I ensure names will appear together on the Wall?

    If you are registering by mail, simply attach the forms together or number each name in the order you would like them to appear.

    Can I list more than two names on a single line?

    You can list as many names as you like on a line, providing they fit within the 43-character limit (this includes spaces). The cost for each person is $150, regardless of whether listed on one line or individually.

    Can additional information or changes be submitted later on?

    Yes: when you purchase a registration for the Welcome Wall you only need to provide the mandatory information about the person to be registered: full name, town and country of birth. Additional information and photos can be entered online after you receive confirmation of your registration.

    What type of payment is accepted?

    We accept cheques, money order and credit card (Visa, Mastercard, American Express) by post. You can also pay by cash at the museum's front reception.

    We will endeavour to email your confirmation letter and post any memento certificates ordered within 7 days of receipt. During busy periods this may take up to 14 days, therefore please allow sufficient time for processing and postage if you are registering a gift.

    Who will receive the gift letter and certificate?

    All correspondence (i.e. confirmation letter/receipt, gift letter and memento certificate) are sent to the person who submitted the registration.

    How can I find out the date of arrival, or more information, about the person I'm registering?

    Click on the "family history research" tab as a starting point to locate the arrival details of a person. The Vaughan Evans Library  located in Wharf 7, may be able to assist you in sourcing additional information regarding immigration. They have 2 research guides that may be of help in your search for more information:
    Immigration - Sailing ships
    Immigration – Steamships and passenger liners:

    The library can be contacted at library@anmm.gov.au  if you need more assistance to locate that elusive passenger list.

    When will my registered name appear on the Welcome Wall?

    Names are added to the Welcome Wall at special unveiling ceremonies, held at the museum twice a year. Ceremonies usually occur around April/May and September/October. The time at which your name will be inscribed on the Wall will depend upon time of registration. For example, if you register close to a ceremony date and are placed on a new panel that is yet to be filled, your registration will appear on the Wall at the following ceremony. Letters of invitation to the unveiling ceremony are posted to all eligible registrants around 6 weeks prior to the event.


  • Photos and Videos
  • Family History

    Family History

    If you are searching your family tree or family history, review this list of helpful websites.

    In Australia, shipping and passenger records are generally held in the state the vessel arrived in. You may like to vary your search to include archival resources in your area , as well as those in the family's port of arrival and country of origin. Unfortunately the museum is unable to provide specific information about ships or arrivals.

    Remember, searching for family history information takes time and sometimes records have been lost or damaged over time.

    The Vaughan Evans Library has research guides that may help start your search.



    National

     The Vaughan Evans Library, Australian National Maritime Museum
       National Archives of Australia

       National Archives of Australia: Record Search (1921-1950 arrivals)

       National Library of Australia: Family History Sources
       You can also search the state library in your state or territory.
     New South Wales

     State Records of NSW

       NSW Heritage Branch

     ACT ACT Heritiage Library

     Northern Territory

     State Library of NT

     Queensland  Queensland State Archives

     South Australia

     State Records of SA

     Tasmania  Archives Office of Tasmania

     Victoria  Public Record Office of Victoria

     Western Australia

     State Records Office of Western Australia


    James Cameron - Challenging the Deep

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