The Prow remembers World War One, August 1914 to November 1918

Stories which speak of Nelson connections with the war have been added to the Prow over the years. These are collected together on this page, where we will also feature new stories. We welcome your story. Please add it to the site, or contact the Prow.

On 15 September 1916 New Zealand suffered its greatest loss of life in WWI, after entering the Battle of the Somme. Nelson men who lost their lives are recorded on the Prow, with links to stories of those who fought - see more.


  • WW1 Index - Nelson Anglican Centre Archives
    A project of the Nelson Branch of the New Zealand Society of Genealogists. This is an index of the names of people cited in the Archives who were associated with WWI activities.
  • Find resources for your WWI research: a focus on regional resources from Nelson Public Libraries and resources listed by WW100.
  • Nelson Historical Society Journal articles: especially Stade, K (2015) WWI: the war at home. Nelson Historical Society Journal. 8(1) pp41-59.
  • Tasman Heritage has a Roll of Honour with information about the soldiers from the Tasman area who died of illness or were killed during World War One.

WW100 Logo Process CMYK

Our Stories

memorial-to-fallen.jpgMemorial to the fallen in Nelson. Nelson City Council
Click image to enlarge
At Home
  • From Cairo to Ngatimoti
    The story of the Guy and Strachan families if Ngatimoti, and a postcard which had a very long journey.
  • Nelsons War Memorials and Anzac Park
    The memorials set up by the people of Nelson to commemorate the fallen of WWI and other wars. Follow the Remembrance Trail, or have a look at the Peace Memorial Pipe Organ at Nelson's Baptist Church.
  • Nelson ships and World War I
    Port Nelson, Nelson shipping and Nelson seamen, had a role to play during World War I - transporting troops from Nelson and ensuring New Zealand remained supplied.
  • Nelson School of Music - the war years
    The World War I years in Nelson were not an easy time for the German born Principal of the Nelson School of Music, Julius Bernhardt Lemmer, or for the German community in Sarau.
  • Fred Gibbs
    Fortunately for Lemmer, Fred Gibbs - a leading member of Nelson society of the time - was a key supporter of Lemmer.
  • Farm Settlements for Returned Soldiers
    The Discharged Soldiers Settlement Act, 1915, allowed the acquisition of a number of properties in Marlborough for soldier settlement, including Erina (Wairau Valley) Alberton (Dillons Point), Moorlands (Rapaura), Linkwaterdale, Goat Hills, Wither and Bomford.
  • Ralph Watson and the Everetts of Nelson
    At home and away during World War I: A tale of two families
  • Daffodil Day
    Supporting "our boys" during World War I. Crowning the Daffodil Day Queen, as well as future Anzac Day ceremonies, took place on Nelson's Church Steps.
  • The Regulus and Port Kembla
    The Regulus made headlines in 1917 when she picked up the crew of the Port Kembla, which had struck a mine off Cape Farewell that had been laid by the German Raider Wolf some weeks earlier.
  • Nelson's WWI Red Flag
    The beautifully embroidered flag created to raise funds for the troops
  • Rifleman John Brunning
    The story of a Nelson family of German descent,  who suffered in the war.
  • Apple Day. Supporting our boys.
    Nelsonians supporting the boys in a very Nelson way.
Kingsford3.jpgReg and Charlotte Kingsford in uniform. Photo courtesy Margaret Kingsford
Click image to enlarge
 At War

See also:

See also regional World War I stories from the Nelson Historical Society Journal:

Volume 7, no.6, 2014:

  • Nelson and the First World War: community, loyalty and dissent, by Dr Jim McAloon, pp. 8-21
  • The Tapawera military camp, by Karen Stade,  pp. 22-32
  • Nelson nurses and WWI, by Cheryl Carnahan, pp. 34-45
  • Faith under fire, by Dennis Bush-King, pp.46-57

Volume 8, no.5, 2019

  • Stade, K. & Wright, K:  Lest we forget - Part one: WWI memorials along Nelson's State Highway 6, pp. 35-47
  • Rice, Dr. G: 2018 James Jenkins Lecture: Nelson in the 1918 Influenza Pandemic, pp. 7-24

Volume 8, no. 6, 2020

  • Stade, L. & Wright, K.: Lest we forget - part two: WWI Memorials in the west of Nelson Province, pp. 6-9

Volume 9, no. 1, 2021

  • Millward, P.: Le Quesnoy: the Nelson Connection, pp.35-43
  • Stade, K. & Wright, K:  Lest we forget - Part three: WWI memorials in Nelson City, pp. 59-71