The letter had the usual two-and-a-halfpenny stamp (21/2d) postage applied plus the extra sixpenny (6d) stamp for the payment of the registration of this letter. The letter arrived the following day.
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Mr M.S. Quinlin was a director and past commandant of the Bathurst Migrant Camp.
In 1948, the site of the World War Two army camp was made over to be a reception centre for displaced persons from Europe. Men, women and children from the Baltic states were among the first to arrive and these strangers in our midst were given the composite title of Balts, which stuck for a while, ignoring the presence also of Czechs, Poles, Austrians, Hungarians, Dutch, Jugo-slave of all persuasions, Ukrainians, and even a few Germans.
The population of the camp grew to 3000, then to 5000, and by the time the camp closed in 1952, Bathurst had been host to over 80,000 people and many of them had found work and stayed locally.
The Migrant Camp occupied 3.5 square miles and was set out just like any town, with well-lit streets, water laid on, a full-time hospital, administration block, canteen and dining areas and 11 self-contained residential blocks capable of accommodating a total of slightly over 6000 persons.
The camp hospital was capable of housing up to 150 patients and personnel at one time.
German was the language most used throughout the camp and this caused numerous problems.
The camp's hospital was under the control of matron Miss Gregory and was staffed with migrant doctors and nurses, mainly Germans.
All surgery, childbirth and serious accidents were mostly taken by ambulance to the Bathurst District Hospital.
The authorities organised a childcare centre which was attached to the hospital at the migrant camp.
The presence of all these people placed a considerable load on all Bathurst services, and not least the medical and hospital capacity.
True, there was the hospital at the camp, under the direction of one staff doctor with the title of medical director, and a staff of migrant medical and nursing personnel, but they were not registered in Australia.
The medical director was a Dutchman called van Leent who had worked in the Dutch Colonial Service in the East Indies and in many places beside. He was multilingual and seemed very experienced.
Van Leent and Dr Brooke Moore were two of a kind, and when it was discovered that Dr Brooke Moore was personally fluent in German, many would attend Dr Brooke Moore's practice in Bathurst.
Dr Brooke Moore usually saw migrant people first at his practice. One doctor described Dr Brooke Moore's German as sounding "like a series of staccato grunts".
The word soon spread around the camp that he was a country doctor. The doctor would also explain to his patients that he had been taken prisoner and sent to prison camps in Germany and in Poland during World War Two.
Dr Brooke Moore's colleagues also learnt more about the medical and surgical problems of migrants.
A baby boom was caused by the Australian men in the services returning from the war, as well as the migrants arriving by boat in Australia.
All the new babies were delivered at the Bathurst District Hospital, but to ensure the Bathurst doctors could cope, they had to send all mothers and their new babies back to camp after 24 hours.
Doctors Ralph Cameron and Mick Busby were kept busy during the years the camp operated, though many migrants who remained in Bathurst and made the city their home became long-term patients and friends.
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