The Ithacan Historical Society of Melbourne

IHS logo


Our story is that of one of the oldest Greek communities in Melbourne beginning with the earliest Ithacan arrivals of the mid nineteenth century.

The Ithacan Historical Society Inc (IHS) was founded in December 1990 by a group of members with a strong desire and commitment to preserve our history and heritage for future generations.


Our purpose
The Ithacan Historical Society aims to encourage and foster the study of Australian and Victorian history with a focus on Ithacans who have settled in Victoria, Australia, taking into consideration Ithacan migration and settlement, economic and social life, customs and family history. 


Our collection
In pursuing this purpose, our primary role is to collect, catalogue and maintain historical records including archival documents, family histories, photographic, video and audio material, and artefacts of historical and cultural significance.

In addition to providing a valuable resource for research, our archives also provide a rich source of material for publications, exhibitions and retrospectives.  Over time we envisage the collection being used for family history researchers and researchers and students interested in early Greek settlement in Melbourne and Victoria. 

We are continually seeking to build our collection and welcome donations of suitable items.

The Ithacan Historical Society is affiliated with the Royal Historical Society of Victoria and is a member of Museums Australia Victorian Collections.


Projects and activities

The IHS has initiated a range of projects for members and the broader community. These include the publication of the ‘Ithacan Memories, Australian Recipes’ cookbook, photographic exhibitions and retrospectives featuring the lives and achievements of well-known Ithacan women, Elly Lukas and Irini Papas and the establishment of Penelope’s Loom for those with an interest in traditional Ithacan handicrafts.

During 2016, the IHS coordinated and supported three major centenary events which celebrated and acknowledged the achievements of the Ithacan community in Melbourne and Victoria:

  • Centenary opening event, included the production of a professional documentary ‘Out of this Earth (now available on DVD) and of the life and times of the Ithacan Philanthropic Society’s founding president, A.J.J. Lucas.
  • Centenary Publication, The Ithacansa permanent historical record of Ithacan settlement in Melbourne/Vic and ‘The Club’
  • Victorian Immigration Museum Exhibition, Our Odyssey – Ithacans in Melbourne, presented the story of Ithacan and Greek migration and settlement in Melbourne and Victoria.
In accordance with the Ithacan Historical Society’s Rules of Incorporation, a person who wishes to become a member of the Association is required to apply to become a member of the Ithacan Philanthropic Society.


The IHS committee is dedicated to the preservation of the history of the Ithacans in Melbourne and Victoria and we welcome interested members to join us at our monthly meetings.  Together we can ensure that the proud history of the Ithacan community and the Ithacan Phiplanthropic Society will not be lost to future generations.