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'"Dear Mother this war is a buggar"'

When Private Donald Melville Wood Brown wrote home in June 1916, quoting a fellow soldier, he had changed his mind about soldiering. Sadly, his war ended when he was killed in action three months later on the Somme.

Armistice Day

Armistice Day marks the anniversary of the ceasefire that ended the First World War and commemorates the sacrifice of those who died while serving their country.

Two plain, purl two: Comforts for the men

In August 1914, New Zealand readied itself for war. Men were mobilised for the New Zealand Expeditionary Force. The home front also mobilised - traditional domestic tasks such as knitting and sewing were suddenly seen as essential wartime work.

The Battle of Romani

After Gallipoli, the men and horses of the New Zealand Mounted Rifle Brigade returned to Egypt. As part of the newly formed Anzac Mounted Division, they were back in action at Romani in August 1916.​​

Signing up the shirkers: Conscription in the First World War

As the war dragged on, a shortage of recruits led to the introduction of national conscription. ​​

​Brockenhurst: The No. 1 New Zealand General Hospital​

A hospital set up near an English village in the summer of 1916 was the site of great medical innovation and also a source of comfort for injured New Zealand soldiers far from home.

A wedding in the North African desert

​The wartime wedding of Captain Thomas Blake and Connie Deane captured imaginations when it was reported in newspapers in late 1915. The ceremony took place at Zeitoun Camp, near Cairo, in full military style. ​

The Battle of Jutland

The reality of the sea as a First World War battleground is often overlooked. Yet, controlling shorelines and shipping lanes was as critical as achieving success on land.

The Battle of Crete

The sight of thousands of German paratroopers filling the Cretan sky signalled the beginning of one of the most dramatic battles of the Second World War.