12 October 1917 – Machine guns poked over the parapets and bayonets were at the ready. Soldiers in khaki approached tentatively, but this wasn’t a battlefield – it was a military-themed ballroom. This is the little-known story of a grand ball that was held in Wellington at the […]
This post is dedicated to the memory of my great great uncle Thomas Alexander Gillanders, who was killed in action one hundred years ago today, and to those who fought alongside him at Gallipoli.
One hundred years ago today the Fairfield Freezing Works held a fancy dress ball in the Orange Hall in Ashburton. The men paid three shillings and sixpence each and the women provided the food. They were entertained by the tunes of Terris’s band, local favourites who played everything […]
On 3 December 1917, the men of the 1st Canterbury and 1st Otago battalions assembled along the front line opposite a German strongpoint that was backed with pillboxes, machine-guns, trenches; and at the heart of the position, the ruins of Polderhoek Chateau. At midday the whistles blew and […]
As a follow-up to my earlier post on the HMAS Encounter I thought I’d share another photograph from the same collection. Last time the identity of the ship was written on the back of the image by the photographer, but this time I know a lot less about […]
One of my largest collections of vintage postcards focuses on those sent by soldiers during the First World War. When I started collecting as a teenager I used to pick them up at stamp fairs, from dealers, auctions, antique shops and secondhand book stores – but I had […]
Time for a History Geek first, I’m blogging while traveling by bus from Christchurch to Dunedin. I haven’t used this Word Press app on my ipad before so apologies in advance for any poor formatting or embarrassing autocorrected text. So what is the topic of choice for my […]
In my last post I shared a Christmas card that was sent by a New Zealand soldier who was about to head off to fight in the Battle of El Alamein in the Second World War. To make sure it arrived in time the card was sent on […]
Resurrecting the humour of yesteryear is a favourite pastime of mine – so today I thought I’d share a charming hundred year old postcard from my maritime collection. As usual, it also comes with an interesting back story.