Project Description

Tadeus PAWLIK (Tad) was born in Poland on the 19 March, 1924. His father John and Mother Gazefa were farmers in Ujny, central Poland. The nearest city was Kielce on the River Vistula where there was a battle on the bridge in WWII between the Polish and German armies and many people were killed.

Tad describes natural vegetation, native birds and animals. They had a mixed farm and orchard where his father grafted fruit trees, grew wheat, potatoes, rye and beet and kept pigs. Potatoes were the staple food and if they froze, the government took them to make whiskey.

He had two brothers (one went missing in the war) and two sisters (one died at eight). During WWII Tad and other young Polish men were rounded up and sent to Germany, where he worked on a farm for four years. After the war he migrated to Australia along with 250 Polish countrymen.

They sailed on the Skatgum from Cuxhaven, arriving in Fremantle in July, 1951. He worked in Roelands on the Irrigation Water Supply. They lived in tents and he was camp cook (because he could speak a little English) and established a vegetable garden.

After leaving Roelands, he worked in the timber industry as a faller and benchman in Nannup, Northcliffe, Greenbushes, Busselton and Jarrahwood. Tad met his wife, a Ukranian widow with a ten year old daughter, in Northcliffe.

After their marriage they moved to Bridgetown and had two daughters of their own. In about 1977 they bought a house in Busselton. His wife and daughters lived in Busselton, while Tad continued to work in Jarrahwood, Nannup, and Busselton until their Bridgetown house was sold.

After his wife had a stroke, Tad cared for her at home inventing an exercise bike for her rehabilitation. His wife passed way in the late 1990s and he kept himself occupied playing his piano accordion, fishing, bike riding, making and repairing things and keeping in touch with his church and Polish friends in Bunbury.