Greek Australians in their own image: Elias and Anna Fountis (Kalymnos)

Effy Alexakis, Leonard Janiszewski

Research output: Contribution to Newspaper/Magazine/WebsiteArticle


Elias was a member of the first Kalymnian sponge diving crew brought out to Australia to dive for pearl shell in seas off the continent’s north-west coast – they were to replace Japanese crews who were banned following WWII. He arrived in May 1954 as a ‘diver supervisor’ within a crew of twelve. The crew were based in Darwin. A second crew arrived in 1955 and despatched to Broome. This insight evidences the difficulties and ultimate failure of the 'Kalymnian experiment', together with the hardship of extended separation experienced by Elias and his wife Anna.
Original languageEnglish
Specialist publicationGreek City Times
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2021


  • Greek-Australian history
  • Greek migration and settlement
  • Greek diaspora
  • Kalymnian pearlers
  • Elias and Anna Fountis


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