Presbyterian Archives Research Centre

Photo Gallery No 14 :

"New Zealand at War : 1914-1918" (Page Two)


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Crossing the Line Certificate, SS Corinthic, 1917


"Crossing the Line" :

A souvenir card to Gunner Claude Moore signed by "King Neptune" to celebrate the 'crossing of the line' [The Equator] by the members of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force 23rd Reinforcements on board the troopship "Cortinthic" en-route to England on the 19th May 1917.


"Why do I, a minister of the gospel whose passion is for peace between God and man, and between man and man, reject with scorn the bare idea of peace with our enemies at this juncture? … It is possible that, even probable, that Germany will ere long be willing to accept peace; but on what terms? … I answer, because if peace is made ere the power of Germany is broken, all this desperate  and dreadful work will have to be done over again, and that in no distant day… " - Extract of a sermon by the Very Rev James Gibb (a known Pacifist) in the Town Hall, Wellington, 8 Aug 1915


A card personally signed by members of the NZ Field Artillery 23rd re-inforcements on board the "SS Corinthic", dated the 9th June 1917, being the day before they arrived at Plymouth England. (Moore Collection)


Signed souvenir card, SS Corinthic, 1917



4.7 Inch Naval Gun on SS Corinthic, 1917


"Our means of defence - 4.7" naval gun" :

The naval gun fitted to the forward deck of the troopship "SS Corinthic". After a short stop at Sierra Leone the Captain obtained a monkey as a ships mascot, being chained up near the gun and keeping everyone amused with its tricks.

Just a week before arriving in Plymouth, Gunner Claude Moore notes in his diary that a Steward on board the 'SS Corinthic' was caught and arrested as a German spy. The circumstances of his discovery are unfortunately not recorded. (Moore Collection)


"We are leagued with our Allies, not for material interests…, not for vengeance - that we leave to the justice that is the heart of the world…, but for the rule of the Eternal over the whole life of man… The war in which the Empire is engaged is in the highest and deepest sense a religious war, and only in so far as this is realised by Government and people will victory come… We are fighting for justice, for the maintenance of sacred and solemnly-signed treaties, for fidelity to international obligations, for the things of the spirit. Moral issues are at stake…" - Dr John Clifford quoted in "The Outlook" Feb 1616.


ANZAC's Far From Home :

The 6225 ton Australian Troopship "Port Hacking" negotiating the Panama Canal, the vessel listing slightly to port as the Australian soldiers on board crowd to one side to watch the passing New Zealand troopship. A magazine produced on board the Australian troopship was rather appropriately named "The Port Hacking Cough" (Moore Collection - scanned from the original negative).


Port Hacking negotiating the Panama Canal, 1917



New Zealand Troopship Negotiating the Panama Canal, 1917


Soldiers on deck and up the rigging taking in the sights on a New Zealand troopship - possibly the RMS Remuera - negotiating the Panama Canal en-route to England via the West Indies. (Moore Collection - scanned from the original negative)


"If Germany has sinned by cruelty, lust, murder, and outrage, we have sinned, and never more so than during the war, by indifference, callousness and pleasure…. Have we seen any slackening of the passion for enjoyment? Have we not turned the war itself into a means of profit? Have we not plunged into an orgy of gambling in the most sacred cause generated by the war, and sold our self-respect under the honoured name of patriotism?... If we have been saved from the darker sins that have stained the name of Germany, we should humbly give God thanks, and, instead of holding up our hands in pious horror at the enormity of her crimes, should remember that it is only the grace of God that has saved us from a like fall." - Sermon by the Rev J Lawson Robinson in First Church Otago 1916.   


New Zealand Soldiers, taken either at Chadderton Camp near Oldham or Eushott Camp at Aldershot near Fleet, 1917. Note the aptly named and distinctive 'lemon squeezer' hats. Gunner Claude Moore appears third from left in the back row. (Moore Collection - scanned from the original negative).


NZ Soldiers at Military Camp, England, 1917



Sling Camp, Bulford, England, 1917


Sling Camp at Bulford on the Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire :

New Zealand troops began constructing 'Sling Camp' soon after the commencement of 'The Great War'. By 1916 it was officially called the 4th New Zealand Infantry Brigade Reserve Camp, training reinforcements including war casualties who were regaining fitness. Unofficially it was known as 'ANZAC Camp' and comprised of four main sections: Auckland, Wellington, Otago, and Canterbury Lines. By 1918, there were 4,300 men in training when Sling Camp suffered large casualties as a result of the Spanish influenza which later hit New Zealand with a vengeance. Note the distinctive Kiwi and "NZ" carved into the chalk hillside which remains to this day (Moore Collection - scanned from the original negative).


"An impotent Church and an irreligious education system producing a prayerless and self-righteous people, are poor preparation for victory in a spiritual conflict….  the war in which the British Empire is engaged is a battle for spiritual ideals and not for material gain. Yet, as we write, the attention of the nation… is deliberately focussed on the matter of money-making. 'How can we turn this war to our advantage in profit-making?' - Editorial "The Outlook" March 1916.   


"On The Move" :

New Zealand troops in England being transported using a fleet of sturdy "Thornycroft" military trucks, all fitted with solid non-pneumatic tyres. (Moore Collection)


Thornycroft Military Troop Transport Trucks, England, c.1917



I'll Dream of You


"I'll Dream of You" :

A wistful and melancholy postcard sent by Mrs Moore in New Zealand to her son Claude serving on the Western Front in France, Christmas 1917. While Claude survived, another of her sons fell at the front. (Moore Collection)


War Funds Act Collection Permit :

A Permit card issued in October 1917 to Mrs Sturgess of Orawia in Western Southland authorizing her to collect money or goods on behalf of the Red Cross under the "War Funds Act, 1915". (Merrivale-Waiau Parish Collection).

Towards the end of 1915 the huge aggregate amount of war funds called for some sort of legislative control. The number of societies collecting for the various funds totalled some hundreds, and there was little, if any, cohesion between the various districts as regards administration. In the main the money from each district was applied for the relief of men belonging to that district. Thus it was that soldiers from a district rich in man-power, but poor in money, were not as well treated in the matter of additional comforts and relief, as were those who came from centres where there was greater personal wealth and, consequently, a larger accumulation of money.

During the Parliamentary Session of 1915 the Legislature passed the War Funds Act, its objective being to control and regulate the administration of war relief funds equitably and uniformly over the Dominion without reference to the locality, so that no sailor, or soldier, or dependents, should be without relief.

The Act prescribed that only the holder of a permit, issued by a person of standing authorised under the Act, could undertake the collection of any moneys for patriotic purposes connected with the war. Any person who, not being the holder of a permit, directly or indirectly solicited subscriptions, rendered himself or herself liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding £20. 



New Zealand War Funds Act District Permit Collection Card, 1917



"You must beat the Germans; you must bring their militarism to the dust; but God needs the Germans and Britain needs them too, for the solidarity of mankind demands that for the true progress of the world the nations shall each make their contribution to the common good…." - Sermon by the Very Rev James Gibb in First Church Dunedin 1916.



Camp on Beach, New Zealand Mounted Rifles, Palestine, 1917


A New Zealand Mounted Rifles Division camped on a beach, believed to be south of the old city of Jaffa in Palestine, Aug 1917. This image appears to portray a kit inspection. Rifleman Alexander McNeur's diary and correspondence describes in detail his tour of duty in the Middle East. (A. McNeur Collection)

Christmas 1917 :

An "ANZAC" (joint Australian and New Zealand military forces) Christmas card sent to a family member by Rifleman Alexander McNeur serving with the 1st New Zealand Machine Gun Corps in Palestine. The cartoon alludes to the soldiers fare of compressed cooked "Fray Bentos" corned beef and "H & P Biscuits". Trooper McNeur's correspondence makes mention of the fact that they were well supplied with locally sourced fruit and vegetables. (A. McNeur Collection)


ANZAC Mounted Division Christmas Card 1917 (p2)Xmas Card 1917



"It has now been definitely announced that Tuesday, April 25 is to be observed as a commemoration day throughout the Dominion, to mark the historic landing of the New Zealand and Australian troops at Gallipoli; under designation Anzac Day." - "The Outlook", April 1916.



NZ Mounted Rifles Section, Amman, 1918


A faded but historic group photo of a New Zealand Mounted Rifles Section after a fight against Turkish forces at Rabbath, Amman. Surviving correspondence and diaries have proved invaluable in telling the story behind many images in our collections. (A. McNeur Collection)

"All that was left of our section when we reached The Plain of Jordan. A captured German machine gun resting on the stone. Most of us were unshaven for a week hence pretty rough." - Rifleman Aleander McNeur (with hat on in middle right of back row) writing to his Brother George, 20 April, 1918.

Switch on, Contact! :

With great curiosity, a large group of soldiers watch as the prop is manually turned to start a bi-plane engine prior to taking off from Chevalier Island at the NZMR Base Camp in Egypt, c.1918 As engines and propellors became larger, attempting to manually start a plane required some fitness. (A. McNeur Collection)


Starting Monoplane at Chevalier Island, Egypt, c.1918



"To the Bible Class men coming into camp I would say : Make up your mind as to your attitude before you come in here… no man is safe to come in here without having a solid foundation of his own for his Christianity. It must be more than an atmosphere; it must be a personal relationship to Jesus Christ. Nothing less than that will stand the strain." Chaplain-Major David Herron, Trentham Military Camp, 1916.



Awatea Camp, Cairo, Egypt, c.1918


"Awatea Camp" Cairo, Egypt :

Group photo of New Zealand Army personnel (including Nurses) and other Nationalities, taken at "Awatea Camp", Cairo, Egypt, c.1918. Rifleman Alexander McNeur, in front row, far left. (A. McNeur Collection)

An Army Chaplain described the Cairo camp as being a difficult camp to work in due to the many immoral 'distractions' afforded by nearby Cairo.

The poignant and melancholy sight in Cairo Protestant Cemetery Egypt of freshly dug mounds of earth covering the graves of New Zealand and Australian soldiers who had died while in camp or in Hospital, 1916. Copied from "The Outlook", 1916.

During the period 1914-1919, "The Outlook" Presbyterian fortnightly journal printed many soldier's portraits who had been killed or wounded, generally with a note detailing their Church involvement or home parish.



Cairo Protestant Cemetery, Egypt, 1916



"Amen! the times are evil and we have to draw the sword and unleash the cannon; the dogs of war have been let slip, and world hears little to-day but the roar of guns, the clash of Armageddon. An ocean of blood has already been spilt, and how much more will flow ere this horror comes to an end God only knows…. And however long delayed, the end of the war will come. And surely then with a new earnestness, a hitherto unknown intensity of devotion, we shall give ourselves to the accomplishment of the great purposes of our God…. to see the nations move forward in that great path of national rectitude and unselfish service that will bring them as peoples into the kingdom of our Lord…" - Sermon by the Very Rev James Gibb in St John's Church, Wellington 4 June 1916.



Captured Turkish Soldiers, Palestine, c.1918


Captured Turkish prisoners in Palestine quietly sitting waiting for something to happen, members of the Mounted Rifles with their horses on the hillside at rear. c.1918 (A. McNeur Collection)

The Turks' hope now lay in the new Republic of Turkey which emerged in 1920 under the leadership of Mustafa Kamal Atatürk, a front-line Military Commander who had served with distinction at Gallipoli.

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