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Remembered Today:

NZ 17th Reinforcements


jhill
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For no particular reason whatever I am posting this curiosity. It is a clipping from the Rocky Mountain House Guide of July 14th, 1916 announcing that the entire male popluation of Campbell Island had enlisted with this unit.

I find this interesting because the Guide was a tiny small town weekly in a tiny frontier town in the Canadian Rockies. There cannot have been any particular personal local interest.

Perhaps someone else finds it interesting as well.

post-75-1156386701.jpg

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Campbell island is a dependency of NZ. It is a reserve nowadays, but in 1914. it was a sheep farm leased to a Mr J Gordon, who held Pastoral Run no 511 for 21 years from 1895. Presumably these men were his shepherds.

I have looked through my WW1 CD under occupation "shepherd" but have found no groups of 7 brothers!

Christine

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The 17th Reinforcements left New Zealand late October 1916, arriving in France mid December 1916.

The chances of all 6 of these men coming through will be remote, Christine, perhaps a serach ubder bushman, or labourer may give a result.

Shame we dont have a surname in the article.

cheers Aaron.

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The chances of all 6 of these men coming through will be remote

I am wondering if they could be the Norton brothers, they were sealers and whalers. If so Harry Norton died 24/08/1918 and is buried at Grevillers British Cemetery.

Cheers, Diane

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Found in the Auckland Women's Weekly 11 May 1916 pg. 55

NORTON - The 7 Norton brothers, the sole occupants of Campbell Island, have all returned to Bluff by the schooner Rachel Cohen to enlist in the 17th Reinforcements, attached to the contingent from Picton, whence they all hail.

I thought it could have been this family as my great grandmother brought one of the boys up as her own.

Cheers, Diane

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So presumably they are

1)Surname NORTON

Given Name Alverston Patrick

Category Second Reserves

Last NZ Address Wairau Rd Picton

Occupation Whaler

Classification D

2)Surname NORTON

Given Name Harry

Category Nominal Roll Vol. 3

Regimental Number 40236

Rank Private

Next of Kin Title Miss Catherine

Next of Kin Surname NORTON

Next of Kin Relationship Sister

Next of Kin Address Te Awaiti Picton

Roll 57

Page 12

Occupation Whaler

3) Surname NORTON

Given Name Manuel

Category Nominal Roll Vol. 3

Regimental Number 40237

Rank Lance-Corpl

Next of Kin Title Miss C

Next of Kin Surname NORTON

Next of Kin Relationship Sister

Next of Kin Address Te Awaiti via Picton

Roll 57

Page 10

Occupation Whaler

4) Surname NORTON

Given Name Richard

Category Nominal Roll Vol. 3

Regimental Number 40238

Rank Private

Next of Kin Title Miss Catherine

Next of Kin Surname NORTON

Next of Kin Relationship Sister

Next of Kin Address Te Awaiti Picton

Roll 57

Page 12

Occupation Whaler

5) Surname NORTON

Given Name Thomas

Category Second Reserves

Last NZ Address Te Awaiti Tory Channel Marlborough

Occupation Whaler

Classification F

6) Surname NORTON

Given Name Timothy

Category Nominal Roll Vol. 3

Regimental Number 40239

Rank Corporal

Next of Kin Title Miss C

Next of Kin Surname NORTON

Next of Kin Relationship Sister

Next of Kin Address Te Awaiti via Picton

Roll 57

Page 10

Occupation Whaler

So who was no 7?

James, Any Nortons in your little town in the Rockies?

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Im not so sure its them.

If they joined up for the 17th reinforcements, those regimental numbers dont exactly match up. A relative of mine was in the 17th reinforcements and his regimental number was 26661. having 40--- numbers are a big jump. Those regimental numbers look as if they joined much later that the 17th reinforcments.

cheers Aaron.

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Name: NORTON, HARRY

Initials: H

Nationality: New Zealand

Rank: Private

Regiment/Service: Canterbury Regiment, N.Z.E.F.

Unit Text: 2nd Bn.

Date of Death: 24/08/1918

Service No: 40236

Additional information: Son of James and Annie Norton, of Te Awaiti, New Zealand.

Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead

Grave/Memorial Reference: XII. A. 18.

Cemetery: GREVILLERS BRITISH CEMETERY

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You can see a picture of Dick (Richard) and Harry Norton, who have been doing the lovely task of clubbing seals on Campbell Island. Circa 1913.

Look here. You can't see their faces really, though.

And it makes sense that they were whalers, not shepherds. From a history snippet about Campbell Island:

Since the islands' discovery in 1810 whalers were well aware of Campbell's close proximity to routes used by whales making their annual winter migration to the north. The last of the shore whaling stations was located at North West Bay and operated from 1909 to 1916, in conjunction with management of the sheep run. The whalers' tow boat was lost in 1913 after which few whales were caught.

Allie

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And the fact they list next of kin as Picton, which is in Marlborough and nowhere near Campbell Island, makes sense when you see this snippet, also about the history of the island.

The first lessee was James Gordon, a Scots migrant then living in Gisborne, who released 400 sheep on the island in 1895 and lived there for brief periods over the next five years. In 1900 his lease was taken over by another Gisborne resident, Captain Henry Tucker, who engaged shepherds from the Shetland Islands to run the farm during the next three years. They returned sporadically until 1922. Tucker also contracted Marlborough whalers from 1909 to 1916, but the farm took second place to their whaling activities and was neglected.

Allie

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Hi,

I will try and find out what reinforcement draft these men were in, I still dont think the 17th, will let you know what I find out. having said that I have been wrong before <_<

cheers Aaron.

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