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William James Watts

Portrait, Auckland Weekly News 1917 - No known copyright restrictions

Portrait, Auckland Weekly News 1917 - No known copyright restrictions


  • Title
  • Forenames
    William James AWMM
  • Surname
    Watts AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
  • Service number
    WWI 25657 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    John Watts (father), Kennedy Road, Napier, New Zealand AWMM
  • Relationship status


Wars and conflicts

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  • War
  • Campaign
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Service number
    WWI 25657 AWMM
  • Military service
  • Promotions/ Postings/ Transfers

Military decorations

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  • Medals and Awards

Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Branch Trade Proficiency
  • Enlistment
    WW1 Unknown AWMM Blacksmith/Civilian AWMM
  • Occupation before enlistment
  • Age on enlistment


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Prisoner of war

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  • Capture details
  • Days interned
  • Liberation date
  • Liberation Repatriation
  • POW liberation details
  • POW serial number

Medical history

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  • Medical notes
    Killed in Action, Cause of Death AWMM

Biographical information

Biographical information

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    • William Watts was the son of John and Theresa Watts, of 9 Kennedy Rd., Napier, New Zealand. AWMM
    • I have written a biography of my uncle William James Watts and this is an excerpt

      William (his parents called him Will or Willie, he signed his letters “Bill“) was born in Napier on 21 May 1895 and at the time of his enlistment, May 30 1916, his occupation was listed as a Fireman and he lived at the Napier Fire Station, although in some documents he was listed as a blacksmith. He had been apprenticed to his father (my grandfather) learning the trade of a blacksmith. So when William turned 21 he enlisted to fight in World War I. He had wanted to enlist earlier but his father refused to let him join up until he was 21.
      He was the eldest of four sons and a daughter (William, Wally (Walter), Roy, and my father Artie (Arthur) and Millie (Mildred) of John and Theresa Watts, 9 Kennedy Road, Napier, and was just 22 years of age when he died on October 12, 1917. The letters and postcards he sent home were simply from ‘somewhere in France’.
      William was part of the Seventeenth Reinforcements of the New Zealand expeditionary forces and left aboard HMNZ Transport 65 (SS “Pakeha”), setting sail from Wellington on Saturday, September 23, 1916. He was in ‘G’ Company, Infantry, his rank was a rifleman, service number 25657, his regiment the New Zealand Rifle Brigade. He signed "for the duration of the war". His height was 5'9", weight 135lbs, dark hair, grey eyes, dark complexion, Church of England religion, chest 35 inches expanded 35 1/2 inches. Public - Christine - Other relative - 8 August 2017 - Military personnel papers and from family
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About death

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  • Death
    12 October 1917 AWMM
    Age 22 AWMM
    YpresBelgium AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name
    Tyne Cot Memorial, Tyne Cot Cemetery, Zonnebeke, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium AWMM

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Command item
Command item
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DateFirst namesLocationRelationshipContact
08 August 2017ChristineNapierOther relative
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