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Giacomo Matra & Antonio Ponto

What's in a Name?

The Italian Community is intrinsically linked with Australia.

It is recorded that the first Italians to see the Australian continent were sailors Giacomo Matra and Antonio Ponto, serving onboard HM Bark Endeavour with Captain James Cook during his historic voyage of discovery of 1770.

Subsequently the first recorded Italian settler was a Sicilian, Guiseppe Tusa, a convict with the First Fleet sent to establish Australia as a British penal colony in 1788.  After serving his sentence, Tusa lived in Sydney, married and had four children.  Today Italian is the second most spoken language in Australia.

What had been a flood of Italians arriving in Australia as migrants after WWII in search of a better life has since slowed to a trickle.  Today Italian-Australians are well established in all facets of  Australian life and have made a significant contribution to the development of Australia's food, wine, and tourism industries.  They have passed on the best of their heritage and culture for the enjoyment of all Australians.

And so as proud owners of Casa Matra Ponto we are delighted to share with you this happy Italian connection.