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History > General History > Dimitri George and Athena (Tzortzo) Poulos', Hlihlis 4 children. George, Con, Harry & Ollie.

History > General History

submitted by George Poulos on 20.02.2005

Dimitri George and Athena (Tzortzo) Poulos', Hlihlis 4 children. George, Con, Harry & Ollie.

Dimitri George and Athena (Tzortzo) Poulos', Hlihlis  4 children. George, Con, Harry & Ollie. - Poulos Family, George & Con

George Dimitri (Tzortzo) Poulos and Con Dimitri (Tzortzo) Poulos as young men in the 1950's.

From an interview with Con Dimitri (Tzortzo) Poulos.

"My father ran the Goulburn Cafe". (Now, (2005) a Chinese Restaurant (the Red Sun).

He married my mother on 16th June 1926.

Dimitri bought Panayoti (Peter) (Tzortzo) Poulos, and "Tass" who married Katina (nee, Tzortzopoulos) Levantis from Greece to Australia.

Athena was a Kanellakopoulos, from Accrata. The family anglaicised their name to Connell. She had two brothers who lived in Goulburn. Jack and Angelo.

After Dimitri died in the car accident, and Athena died from cancer, (See more detailed history of Dimitri and Athena in a previous entry placed in this section)...Jack tried his hardest to keep the family together. "He didn't want to split us up". He employed a number of diffferent women to do the baby-sitting, cleaning, washing, etc, "but eventually it all became too much".

Olympia, always known as "Ollie" was adopted by her Nono, Theo Venardos, of Crookwell. Theo owned, Theo's Cafe.

Harry would later be adopted by famous butcher shop proprietor and land-holder, Steve Varvaressos.

Jack had an altercation with a soldier - in response to the usual racial villification of the time - "dirty Greek dago.." etc.
Con Dimitri Poulos thinks Jack knocked him down, and either killed him, or wounded him seriously. "Uncle Jack left town. He went to either Narrandara...or jail".

Uncle Angelo, who owned the Occidental Cafe in Goulburn, took over Jack's parental duties. He looked after George, Con and Harry. Caring for the children all became too much.

For a few weeks they were placed in Saint John's Orphanage....earning the group parachoukli - "..ta orfana". "Uncle Jack found out, and had Harry placed with his Nono - Steve Varvaressos. (A nephew of Steve's, a Sydney solicitor, and a neighbour of mine in Dover Heights) recalls as a young boy that he was at a Varavaressos function, when Steve was called to "come and get Harry".

George and Con stayed on with Uncle Angelo. Later George went to Narrandara. Con stayed in the Occidental with Uncle Angelo.

On the 20th November 1944, "...he picked me up in a Ford Prefect utility, and took me to Crookwell, to work in the shop". In the front were Theo Venardos and another Crookwell Kytherian, George (Proto) Psaltis, and in the back Con and Anne Psaltis, (nee,Comino). Con took with him his bike, and a small port.

Con was now back with his sister Ollie at Theo's Cafe, Crookwell. He stayed with Ollie for 9 months. Theo and Con did not get on well. "We were always fighting."

Con then went to work with George Psaltis at the Niagara Cafe. George had bought the cafe from Theothoros Nikolaos Tzortzopoulos, father of Steve Theo Kapitanios (Tzortzo) Poulos. "I finished my schooling in 1948...and left Crookwell".

"I struck out on my own. I went to work for Uncle Jack, who was now managing a picture theatre attached to a cafe - the White Rose - for Menarchus, in Wagga. I worked there for 12 months".

I then moved down to Melbourne, and worked with a cousin for Myers. I was then employed at General Motors Holden in their No. 5 factory for 3 months. I then went up to Mount Beauty, near Albury.

In the meantime, brother George had begun working in underground mining and tunnelling operations. I stayed in the area for about 9 months, before moving to Sydney. There I worked at the Astoria Milk Bar, 743 Punchbowl Road, Punchbowl, which was next to the Astoria Theatre, then owned by Uncle Jack Connell. Jack had bought the theatre from a Cassimatis. I stayed in Punchbowl for 12 months.

I then returned to Goulburn, where I worked for 3 months with Rosi Hatzistells in the Blue and White Cafe.

I then gained employment at the Goulburn Abbotiorrs were I remained employed for 17 years.

In the meantime on 17th June 1954 I married Janice Garner, in the Church of England Church, Goulburn. It was a Greek Service. Tass Levantis was the "best man".

In 1969 I took on the Mittagong Golden Fleece Service Station, with Jack Sophios, as a partner. We worked that business for 3 years.

We then took on Springett's Supermarket at Bowral. It was called the Hot Canary. It was connected with a wholesale buying group called Highland Bulk Buyers. I was in Bowral for 6 years.

We then moved to the Central Coast of NSW, to Woy Woy, were we ran Con and Jan's Takeaway for 22 years. I sold the business in 1999, and have been retired since.

Con was a very good Rugby League footballer. He is very modest about his achievements. In 1952 he started playing first grade for the Goulburn Workers Club, in the NSW Group 8 competition. In 1958 he had an exceptional year, being voted the best and fairest forward in Group 8. His portrait still hangs in the foyer of the Goulburn Workers Club. In 1961, he retired; aged 30. In the near future I hope to feature Con's achievements in the Sporting Life segment at kythera-family.


[From an interview with Anastasia (Tassia) Varvaressos, Harry's "mother"].

Steve Varvaressos was from a small coastal village near Niapolis. Steve went to High School in Greece, When his father George bought him to Australia, he went to night school to improve his English.

He had a number of butchershops - about 6-7, which he later sold and went on the land, in various locations, including Gunnedah, Young, and a larger property about 80 miles from Griffith.
"My husband Steve was a very good businessman...He never gossipped...and he never discussed his business."
He was President of the Hellenic Club, for two terms.

Anastasia (Tassia) Varvaressos's father was Peter Zervis, and mother Ksanthi Raftopoulos, both from Ithica.

Steve would go to Goulburn on business - buying cattle. Which was probably where he met Dimitri Tzortzopoulos, and how they became friends.

Tassia would visit her relatives - the Raftopoulos's'who had the shop next to the picture theatre. (Xenephon Raftopoulos).

At this time Tassia visited Goulburn. She visited Harry's mother. "I kaimeni..she got cancer."

After her death Steve and Tassia, as Nono and Nona, adopted Harry as their own child.

Harry and their daughter Madelaine, were bought up as virtual brother and sister. "Madelaine and Harry got on very well. They were close...very, very close."

Harry initially went to Waverley College, and then later to Shore College.

He got very good marks at the end of his schooling, but chose not to go to University. Tassia: "I really miss him, because he was a very bright....a very, very bright young man." (Tassia speaking, 2004).
"He got a job, but the jobs he got ....he always did well..."

Later he ran the Varvaressos properties. They were very large and successful business ventures. Harry was - like Steve -a very astute, diligent businessman.


Dimitri George and Athena (Tzortzo) Poulos', Hlihlis  4 children. George, Con, Harry & Ollie. - Poulos Family Dimitris children + C & G

As a bridesmaid at the wedding of Helen Levantis and Peter Zantiotis (Zantes). Ollie sent this photograph to her grandmother and namesake Olympia, in Karavas, Kythera, with this inscription on the back - "My Dearest Grandmother, With all my love, Your loving grand daughter, Olympia. xxx".

Ollie married Alex Faros Arnoutis in 1956, and moved to Claremont in Queensland, where she has lived ever since. The Faros's owned the Paris Cafe there. Alex's father owned it before him. Alex has been in Claremont for more than 70 years.


Went into the Army on the 18th March, 1945. When the war ended, he went to Japan with the British Occupation Forces. He left the Army in 1948.

George went gold and uranium mining at Uranium Hill in South Australia. He later moved to Uranium City in Canada.

In 1956 George and Harry ventured to Kythera to meet their aging grandmother Olympia. George went on to London were he met his future wife. They moved to Canada, settling in Uranium City, Canada.

George and his wife then moved to the town of Bishop in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. George established a tourist based business in Cambria, which "went broke".

He took on a job as cook on a tugboat that travelled from Seattle, USA, to Alaska. George settled in Seattle. He retired there at the age of 65.

On the 26th Sept, 2000, he died of lung cancer.

George Dimitri & Athena Tzortopoulos's family reunites

From about 1991 ..."we all seemed to get together". Harry was the instigator. We arranged a number of joint trips and "get togethers".

In 1991 I "..hadn't seen George for 28 years.....I hadn't seen Ollie for 12 years.." Harry brought George to the shop in Woy Woy and I didn't even know him". He would make 3-4 trips to Australia, including a few where we gathered at Harry's small catle property in Milton, NSW....were you and Uncle Con came to visit us one time...".

Dimitri George and Athena (Tzortzo) Poulos', Hlihlis  4 children. George, Con, Harry & Ollie. - Poulos Family Ollie as bridesmaid at Zantes wedding

Left to Right: Harry Dimitri (Tzortzo) Poulos, George Dimitri (Tzortzo)Poulos, Ollie Faros, (nee, (Tzortzo)Poulos), Con George (Tzortzo)Poulos - the sole surviving uncle of the original Hlihlis "clan" from Karavas, Con George (Tzortzo)Poulos, and George Con (Tzortzo)Poulos, their first cousin.

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1 Comment

submitted by
Donna Morris
on 12.03.2008

Around what year did your father run the Goulburn cafe?