Giovanni (John) and Caterina Giampaolo were farmers from Southern Italy. John heard about Australia from a relative who was already living in Australia. He wanted to provide a better life for his wife and daughters, as after the war, times were hard.
John arrived in Australia on an unassisted passage in 1950. He worked for the McLarty’s at Blythewood.
Caterina and daughters, Agatha, Maria and Antonio arrived in 1953. They lived at Old Blythewood Homestead which is now a museum run by the national Trust.
In 1957 John bought a house at 38 James St, Pinjarra, which was surrounded by 31/2 acres of land. John planted a variety of fruit trees, grape vines and olive trees. They also grew a wide range of vegetables, raised poultry which provided fresh eggs and chickens. John and Caterina generously gave produce away to family and friends. They also had a beautiful rose garden and some amazing pot plants, which Caterina was very proud of. Needless to say they both wonderful gardeners.
The grandchildren loved to visit and enjoyed the wide open spaces.
When the property became too big to manage they sold off some of the land, keeping the block next door (No 36 James St.) which had most of the fruit trees etc. In 1972 John and Caterina built a house in Peter St, Pinjarra and rented out the James St. House, before selling it in 1981.
Unfortunately, Caterina took ill and passed away in 1990.
John enjoyed relatively good health, but passed away in 2000. They are both buried with other family members in Karrakatta cemetery.
They are survived by their daughter’s Agatha, Maria and Antonia, 10 grandchildren and 9 Great Grandchildren.