Tuesday 11 March 2014

My family in World War One

One of the things we had to say on the Gallipoli Volunteer Program application form was whether any member of our families had fought at Gallipoli.
Both my grandfathers fought in World War One. My mother’s father came from the north west of England and he fought on the Western Front. I’ve seen the postcards he wrote from there and sent back to his wife and little daughter (my aunt.)
My father’s father was at Gallipoli, and my great-great-aunt, Louisa Bird (Aunt Louie) was in the first group of 50 NZ nurses to sail overseas in WW1. All of them survived. 
If you know that someone from your family fought in World War One (or in any other war that New Zealand has been involved in), a good place to start is on the Auckland War Memorial Museum’s Cenotaph database. You can put in their name – or as much of it as you know, and the war or conflict if you know it, and then work though the results. 
Sometimes you will only get brief details but there might be extra material included as well. For example, if you put in the name of Cyril Bassett, it will take you to the only New Zealander to win a VC at Gallipoli, with links to other info about him. 

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