This week on Who Do You Think You Are? actress Melissa George learns more about her mother’s family tree, starting at Rottnest Island in WA.
Actress Melissa George knows something about her father’s side of the family, but there are a number of gaps in her mother’s ancestral story. Melissa has a sense of a number of secrets being held back, even a feeling of some shame. Her journey takes her first to Rottnest Island, where Melissa’s great, great, great grandfather had a job as a prison guard. But as Melissa’s search continues, she learns of a suspected case of abuse of a prisoner in a colonial gaol which raises questions about her ancestor’s involvement.
Along another branch of her maternal family tree, Melissa seeks to uncover the truth behind the arrival of two of her great grandparents in Australia as child migrants. In both cases there are family myths of who was, and who wasn’t, an orphan. Travelling to the UK, Melissa discovers the truth, learning how these myths have masked the grim reality of a tragic tale of heartbreak and abandonment.
Tuesday, 10 April at 7.30pm on SBS ONE.