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Jagt Singh

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  • Service number
    • WWI 11/1011 AWMM
    • WWI 13/1011a AWMM
  • Also known as
    Soldier Singh AWMM
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Last rank
  • War
Jagt Singh required for Certificate of Registration under the Immigration Restriction Amendment Act. 1920. 5th May 1921. Archives New Zealand R7817714. Image has no known copyright restrictions.
Jagt Singh required for Certificate of Registration under th … Read more

Identity

  • Title
  • Forenames
    Jagt AWMM
  • Surname
    Singh AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
    Soldier Singh AWMM
  • Service number
    • WWI 11/1011 AWMM
    • WWI 13/1011a AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion
    Sikh AWMM

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    1 January 1889 AWMM PunjabIndia AWMM
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
    WW1 Unknown AWMM Manakau AWMM
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    WW1 Sanwan Singh (father), Shaukar, Punjab, India AWMM
  • Relationship status
    Pre 14 February 1915 AWMM Single AWMM

Service

Wars and conflicts

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  • War
  • Campaign
    • 1915-1916 Gallipoli AWMM
    • 1914-1916 Egypt AWMM
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Service number
    • WWI 11/1011 AWMM
    • WWI 13/1011a AWMM
  • Military service
    20th Deccan Horse AWMM
  • Promotions/ Postings/ Transfers

Military decorations

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Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Enlistment
    WW1 15 December 1914 AWMM
    Age 23 AWMM
    Sawmill hand/Civilian AWMM
    AWMM
  • Occupation before enlistment
  • Age on enlistment

Embarkations

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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
    • 14 July 1915 AWMMHospital Diseases , Wounds, WWI AWMM
      Wounded in lower extremities. AWMM
    • Hospital Diseases , Wounds, WWI AWMM
      Recurring appendicitis AWMM
    • Tattoos, WWI AWMM
      Tattoo marks both forearms AWMM

Last known rank

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  • Last rank

Biographical information

Biographical information

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  • Name is recorded as Tagt Singh in Nominal Rolls, as Jagt Singh in Archives New Zealand. Listed as Tagt in the New Zealand Society of Genealogists "New Zealand World War I Service Personnel & Reserves Index/"

    Featured in the diary of Lieutenant Colonel James McCaroll of the North Auckland Mounted rifles: "We came under machine gun and artillery fire, so we had to steady up. The Regiment H.Q. reached a small knoll and we dismounted and had a look and here was the whole Turkish force on the move back - we were within hundred yards of them, so I ordered all to retrieve...to the horse mount and get back. I behind a bush, then Jagt Sing[h] came up with my horse. I can tell you I got mounted in record time."

    "A new life in Aotearoa
    Jagt Singh migrated to New Zealand in 1913 and served in World War I as a trooper with the New Zealand Mounted Rifles. Singh was born in Punjab, India in 1889 and at age 24 left home for a new life in New Zealand. Just over a year after his arrival in New Zealand, Singh enlisted in the Army and became one of a small number of Indian New Zealanders who served with the New Zealand Forces in World War I.

    Though they were often willing to serve, the Indian community in New Zealand were excluded from service in the First World War for the most part. As British subjects, Indian immigrants living in New Zealand were balloted for service, however, when they tried to enlist they were usually turned away. They could be rejected on grounds of being medically unfit, and later ‘commissariat difficulties’* were used as a reason to put them on early discharge or indefinite leave.

    This context, of systematic racial and religious intolerance, makes Jagt Singh’s achievements in the First World War all the more remarkable. He was an experienced soldier who proved himself to be a valuable asset to the New Zealand Army.

    Jagt Singh entered Trentham Camp in January 1915 and served with the New Zealand Army for the duration of the War, a full four years and 176 days. He had previously spent nearly six years in the Indian Army in the cavalry regiment The 20th Deccan Horse, earning the nickname "Soldier Singh".

    Private Singh was posted to Egypt for training with the Wellington Mounted Rifles, 3rd reinforcements and went on to serve in the Gallipoli Campaign. It was during the Battle of Chunuk Bair in August 1915 that Jagt Singh was badly wounded in the leg and admitted to hospital in Heliopolis.

    Making his mark
    Singh recovered quickly and rejoined his unit in Palestine and Egypt. By 1916 Singh had transferred to the Auckland Mounted Rifles 4th reinforcements. He is praised in the diary of Lieutenant Colonel James McCarroll, Commanding Officer of the Auckland Mounted Rifles for his quick thinking and helpfulness in the field.

    The Regiment H.Q. reached a small knoll and we dismounted and had a look and here was the whole Turkish force on the move back – we were within a hundred yards of them, so I ordered all to retrieve to the horse mount and get back. I could not find my horse and I saw the Turks on the hill and we got some heavy fire. I was running back, bullets flopping round me, so I fell behind a bush, then Jagt Singh came up with my horse. I can tell you I got mounted in record time. We retired and assembled about half a mile away.

    For Jagt Singh, the Army offered him the opportunity to make a return visit to India. In 1919 he went to Bombay on leave and returned to the New Zealand Army a few months later. After the War he was discharged and sent back to New Zealand, eventually moving back to India though he returned to New Zealand for work on multiple occasions.

    The many poppies placed on our digital memorial to Jagt Singh on Online Cenotaph represent the tributes of those still remembering him today.

    You can visit Online Cenotaph to lay your own poppy, add a note, or contribute information you have about the man and his service.

    *'Commissariat difficulties' referred to the difficulties for the army to cater to diets such as vegetarian and Halal, and special food preparation requirements adhered to for religious reasons." Excerpt Johnson, Ella. Soldier Singh, an Indian ANZAC. Auckland War Memorial Museum - Tāmaki Paenga Hira. First published: 1 November 2017. Updated: 1 November 2017. AWMM
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Death

About death

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  • Death
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference

Memorials

Memorial

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  • Memorial name

Roll of Honour

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Sources

Sources

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Contributors

Command item
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DateNameLocationRelationshipContact
23 August 2018EllaAuckland, NZResearcher
04 May 2017ManishaWellingtonResearcher