Sons of South Canterbury - August 1914

World War 1 began on 28 July 1914. 4th August Great Britain declares war on Germany. The prospect of a long war was accepted and no departing group left Timaru without the cheers of spectators to wish them well. They marched from the drill hall to the railway station through packed streets of men and women not afraid to show their emotions. We do not have exact record of how many from South Canterbury served overseas during the war but they were there in every theatre and in every service, many held high commands. Lieutenant L.G.D. Acland, officer in charge of the Canterbury squad of the Army Service Corps. 

Timaru Herald, 11 August 1914, Page 8 Railway Engineers leave
There was a great crowd of people on the Timaru railway station last evening to see the first of the volunteers leave for the seat of war. They consisted of members of the Railway Battalion of New Zealand Engineers, of which 200 are to go to the front. The mobilisation orders were only received on Sunday night; it will be seen therefore that the call to arms was responded to with remarkable celerity. Those who joined the train at Timaru were:—
Sergt.-Major Forsyth, Sergt. Willsteed, Sergt. Wirttleston.
Sappers Hutchings, King, Guthrie, Moody, Craw, Smith, Agnew.
Prior to leaving they were photographed on the Railway Station and Captain Stansell (of the stationmaster's office) who was in charge of them.


George St. Timaru. The gathering closed with the ringing of "Auld Lang Syne" and the National Anthem.

The crowd gathered on Station St. during the departure of the 2nd (South Canterbury) Regiment from Timaru during World War I. Photographs taken 21 August 1914. Photographer unidentified. Two photographers are visible (left centre) on the balcony of  Werry's Hotel. The Club Hotel to the right.


Station St. with the Railway to the left and the tall Evans Roller Mill. Look at all the hats and methods of transportation.

THE SOUTH CANTERBURY CONTINGENT  - THE ROLLCALL
Ashburton Guardian, 14 August 1914, Page 6
Timaru, August 13 The following are the names of the infantry contingent to go from the South Canterbury Military District (Rakaki to Waitaki): —
Officers.  Captain Grant*, in command; Captain Houlker, second in command;
Lieutenants. Stephens and Lawry, first; Lieutenants Barclay, Fraser, and Hislop, second;
Sergeants. N. Crawford, O. E. Davey*, E. G. Myles, L. S. Wood, Band-Sergeant Osborne, Bugler-Sergeant Keay.
Privates.—

B. Aldridge
A. Anderson
W. Auld
W. Blishard
C. C. Barclay
E. D. Burns
H.R.H. Beauchamp
John Bell
J. S. Bennett
A. Black
W. Blackham
A. E. Bonnin*
G. Bower
T. A. Bradley
A.C. Broom
A. G. Brown
D. E. Brown 
W. L. Brown
J. F. Bryce
R. S. Calvert*
H. N. Campbell
C. H. Childs
J. H. Christmas
Albert  W. Clausen
C. J. Clear*
J. Cochran*
D. Charsley
A. E. Codyre*
T. E. Daly
D. Devon*
A. G. Dix
E. Dewhirst*
F. H. Duncan
F. G. Dunn
P. A. Dunn
B. G. Edwards
R. E. Fairbrother*
G. H. Ferens
E. M. Finlayson
B. M. R. Fitzgerald
Wm. H. Foord
J. S. Foster
L. J. Fowke
W. Furby
G. A. Gibbs
E. Gibson
G. Gibson
J. F. Gibson
W. Glanville
A. Gower-Burns
Wm. Grey
Chas. Groves
F. H. Hamon
S. A. Hampson
D. Hanna
F. R. Harold
W. Harris
W. H. Hay*
E. D. Hayhurst
H. H. Hayhurst
F. A. Haynes
A. E. Head
W. S. Hindmarsh
W. M. Hocking
F. Hopper
J. R. Howard
A. J. Hunt 
W. Hunt
F. H. Irving
J. W. Johnson
A. J. Johnstone
A. M. Johnstone*
D. S. Keay
L. V. Latimer*
D. Leeden
G. T. Long
R. Long
Jas. Lynch
P. McGill
Geo. McGrath
J. T. McHaffie
W. H. McHaffie
J. W. McIntyre
A. McCleery
J. McMillan
Cyril McPherson
D. McVey*
P. M. Mckenzie
 R. Mackie
R. A. Martin
L. Mason
J. J. G. Menzies
R. J. Millar
W. D. Millar*
W. J. Moore
W. H. Nicoll
W. Palliser*
F. L. Parker
H. F. Philpott
H. F. Pink*
G. E. Powell
Harold J. Radcliffe, Jno.*
J. R. Rattray
 C. F. Reid
O. Richardson
G. Robinson
T. S. Russell
W. Rutherford*
E.C. Sarginson
J. A. Scott *
H. W. Scott
H. Shivas, Jno.
G.W. Sides
R. Sinclair
T. Smallridge
R. H. Smith 
W. E. Smith
J. L. Scoular* 
H. H. Saunderson
J. B. Squire
T. E. Squire
R. S. Stechman 
T. T. Stevens
C. E. Stevenson*
J. Stewart
C. Strang
J.C. Sullivan
Rev. J. R. Sullivan
M. Sullivan
W. I. Tatt
C. A. Tidy
J H. Timmons
G. E. Tremain
E. F. Vincent
J. H. Wallace*
R. F. Walsh
G. B. Watkins
R. E. Watkins*
Arthur Watson*
C. A. Watts
E. G. Weight*
J. Wilson
S. Wilson
A. W. Woodside*

The list of mounted men is not yet complete. About 100 men had been selected up to last night. Major Wain is to go in charge of the mounted men. Captain Hammond, of Ashburton, will be second in command, and Lieutenants Barker, Hayter*, and Bruce will go as first lieutenants, and Lieutenant Hayter as second. Lieutenants Marchant*, Mathias, and Dailey were unable to secure commissions, but are being taken in the ranks.

157 listed = 144 Privates, 6 Sergeants, 5 Lieutenants, 2 Captains.
Out of this list 29 did not come back, i.e. 18.4%* 
Nor did Jimmie Hagerty, The Kidd from Timaru. 

 Fifty men from the Mackenzie volunteered for the 'Main Body' of the NZEF and took the train to Timaru starting on 7th August 1914. Sixteen did not come home, i.e. 32% made the supreme sacrifice.

Timaru, August 18 -21
Twenty more mounted men are leaving to-morrow to complete the South Canterbury, quota of 160 mounted and 180 foot.
The war fund, counting the value of the horses given is now over £9000. J. Hagerty, the well-known Timaru boxer, has joined the Expeditionary Force as an orderly, as his height would not allow him to go as a private. Hagerty* is the professional lightweight champion of New Zealand. The Rev. J. R. Sullivan, a young Methodist minister at Timaru, has volunteered for the ranks and has been accepted. Two well-known Mount Cook guides have been enrolled in the force. Mr R. Young, who is a Waiau boy, goes with the North Canterbury Mounteds, and Mr W. Brass, who has associations at Waimate goes with the South Canterbury force.


The Wakefield Temperance Hotel to the left on Station St., Timaru 21st August 1914. Ice plant clinging to the hillside.

After they arrived in Christchurch they went to Addington camp. The Main Body of the NZEF departed from Lyttelton on 16 October 1914, on the Tahiti and the Athenic. 1st November 1914 vessels met in King George Sound, W.A. The convoy arrived in Suez, Egypt on 3 December 1914 by way of Hobart, Albany, Colombo and Aden.  It was the largest single contingent to leave the country; 8,427 men and 3,815 horses. The Tahiti departed Lyttelton in Oct. 1914 with Canterbury Mounted Rifles Regiment, Wellington Mounted Rifles Regt. (1 Squadron), Canterbury Infantry Battalion (1 Company), 30 Officers, Naval Transport Officer, Medical Officers, Chaplain with 611 Men and 282 Horses. The Athenic departed Lyttelton in Oct. 1914 with Headquarters Mounted Rifles Brigade, Canterbury Mounted Rifles Regt. (2 Squadrons), Canterbury Infantry Battalion (less 1 Company), 54 Officers, Naval Transport Officer, Medical Officers & Chaplain  1,259 Men and 339 Horses.

South Canterbury NZGenWeb Project