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Tohutoa Medals is home to the Museum’s collection of service medals and royal and national honours. Instead of keeping them out of sight, many of the Museum's medals are stored here. These include campaign medals, orders, decorations, and related service medals.
These medals are a working collection. This means some medals will be on display elsewhere in the Museum, on load to other institutions, or being cared for by Museum staff.
Use the search field below to find medals. Type in the kind of medal, the name of the person it was awarded to, or the drawer it is stored in.
Who were the first women to be awarded medals? Who was the first New Zealand woman recommended for a war medal? When was the first civilian woman honoured? Discover the stories behind these outstanding women.
Canterbury nurses who served in the South African War (detail). From left to right: Sisters Hiatt, Littlecott, Peter and Webster. Alexander Turnbull Library.
We celebrate the people who are awarded medals. But who are the deserving men and women who were never recognised with a medal?
Full length portrait of Private Percy Rameka, Reg No 16/1574, of the 5th Maori Contingent, New Zealand Maori Pioneer Battalion. Schmidt Collection, Auckland Libraries.
Take a look at the New Zealand Royal Honours system and how it works. Learn the correct way to mount and wear medals. Did you know there is a specific order to wearing medals?
The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire : Commander (Civil) presented to Hon Sir Thomas William Alport Barker. 2001.25.5.
The stories behind medals can sometimes take a bit of unravelling. Medals can end up in the wrong hands – sometimes because of a mistake, but other times it is not so simple.
NZ Memorial Cross presented to Wing Cdr Frank Athol Pennington. 2002.111.6.