Facinating items hidden deep within our vaults.
Brass bugle found near the site of the British Army Camp that was involved in the Battle of Puketutu during the New Zealand Wars.
Lapel badge belonging to Christchurch born Dr Jessie Scott who volunteered with the Scottish Women’s Hospitals for Foreign Service during WWI.
Mess gown worn by the New Zealand Women’s Royal Army Corps worn at their 25 anniversary dinner.
A puzzle made in New Zealand during World War Two by the Mere Company. The pieces are a mixture of standard puzzle shapes and swastika-shaped pieces.
Rugby ball used by the 4th Field Ambulance during the Desert Campaign in World War Two and later in a German prisoner of war (POW) camp as a way to pass the time.
Lieutenant Rout is injured but survives a German artillery barrage during the Battle of the Somme whilst taking a water party up to the front lines in Fleurs.
World War II Italian Fascist Mothers Medal was used as a form of public recognition for mothers who bore 5 children, with a single bow added to the ribbon for every extra child she had.
Trench whistle belonging to Major John William Fletcher (MBE).
A melodeon is a type of accordion, and is also known as a one-row diatonic accordion
A child’s soldier doll from World War I, with it’s own hand-made and personalised uniform.
A walking stick made with debris from the well-known Cloth Hall in Ypres during WWI by Sergeant Charles Cameron Begg.
A selection of cartoons by well-known New Zealand journalist Murray Moorhead.
Trench art objects are holders of soldiers’ memories and reminders of the conflict they faced. Made out of recycled war refuse such as shell casings, spent bullets or whatever came to hand.
Nimrod was the mascot for the 2nd Battalion, New Zealand Regiment. The blanket has the 2nd Battalion crest, and Lance Corporal’s stripes on both sides.
A Khaki Cloth Housewife attributed to 13/2823 Albert Henry Johnston MM. This object contains an assortment of needles, nails, buttons and safety pins, and a small silver tin containing adhesive plasters.
The Combination Protector was made and patented by a Whanganui Company, Young and Collins Ltd. It consists of a leather pouch and has two steel plates stored inside.
Entrenching tools were extremely important for quickly establishing trenches under direct fire from Turkish defences along the steep terrain at Gallipoli.
The diary and wallet style soldier’s mirror of Pte. George Peachey which suffered damage from shrapnel just may have saved his life.
These clogs are from Damascus, souvenired by 72056 Catherine Ada Wells in 1942.
Sweetheart Brooches were a keepsake gifted to loved ones during World War I and II. Given by soldiers to mothers, sisters, daughters, wives or girlfriends, these brooches came in a varied range of designs.
This beautifully made Mah Jong set is a striking example of Prisoner of War Art. It was made by a Japanese Prisoner of War (POW) at Featherston Camp during World War Two and given to a guard.
The handle is made out of one section of horn in which the end is carved into the head of a bird. Inlays of painted white horn and metal have been added to achieve this.
The British Red Cross, in conjunction with the Order of Saint John sent out special Christmas parcels to supplement the often poor camp diets and bring a bit of Christmas cheer.
The rectangular box has a lid, which was originally hinged along the back edge, with a paper label printed ‘Christmas Greetings from the Australian Red Cross 1917’.
During the World War I campaigns in Sinai and Palestine, prisoners from the Ottoman forces (Turkish) were captured and held in camps or hospitals until the end of the desert battles.
A souvenir Egyptian Wallet, used by Corporal Bernard Hansen during World War II.
A collection of pencil carvings created by 10/303 Private Christopher William ‘Bill’ Connell.
Medallions presented to soldiers who competed in the Head of the River rowing race of May 1918.
A closer look at the cartoon collection of Major Horace Leonard Heatley, editor of the NZEF Times and official war correspondent during World War Two.
Learn more about Maori weapons used by our pre european native warriors.
This week’s artefact is an embroidered silk cloth ‘souvenir of Egypt’ sent home during World War I. This type of cloth was a very popular souvenir during the war.
A German made bridging pontoon used during World War I to cross the Suez Canal.
The competition for this cup was started in Britain by Colonel Sir James Loyd-Lindsay around 1873. It involved a team of four horsemen jumping over a series of hurdles and firing their rifles in unison
A medal group of Captain Alexander Cumming of the New Zealand Medical Corps.
The pounamu mere made of greenstone was the most revered of all Maori weapons and was also the most time consuming to make.
Newspaper the Pull Thro’ produced by the Kiwi soldiers in Samoa during World War I.
This artefact is a Fullerphone. The Fullerphone is a portable telegraph signalling device that was used in both world wars.
This artefact is the unique medal group of Captain Joseph Entwhistle Donald. What makes it so interesting is that Donald’s medals tell us he served in the Anglo-Boer War, World War I and World War II.
This artefact is a piece of trench art made during World War I of an Albatros biplane.
This weapon was brought back to New Zealand on a furlough draft by Private Allan Roy Kelland (22215), 18 Battalion, 4 Infantry Brigade, 2NZEF.
This artefact is a mounted pine cone brought back from Chunk Bair by the granddaughter of Colonel William Malone, Commanding Officer, Wellington Battalion.
This artefact is a M5A1 gun sight which was used on both Stuart and Sherman tanks for their machine guns during World War II.
This artefact is a World War One nurses uniform worn by 656 Sister Maggie Dalrymple.
This pocket watch belonged to the family of Gallipoli soldier Private Albert Dixon Cochrane.
This knife, which is currently on display in the “A is for ANZAC: Two Armies, a Shared History” exhibition, has been made from a single piece of shrapnel.
This artefact is a piece of Trench Art made in a WWII Prisoner of War Camp. Trench Art refers to pieces of art made by soldiers, prisoners of war or civilians during times of conflict and often using war materials such as bullets or artillery shells. Prisoners of War (POWs) often made trench art as […]
This artefact is a WWI Hessian Christmas Medal given to the German Hessian soldiers by the Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig
These floorboards come from the now demolished Royal Victoria Hospital in Netley, Hampshire, UK
This artefact is a Crown and Anchor game set. Crown and Anchor is a dice-based gambling game traditionally played in the Royal Navy.
This artefact is a Thompson Sub Machine Gun (SMG) made locally by the Viet Cong (VC) throughout South Vietnam.
This artefact is a miniature figurine of Captain Charles Upham, VC & Bar.
This artefact is a World War One Trench Club used for close combat during trench raids.
Many soldiers brought rings home as souvenirs or even made them themselves while overseas.
This artefact is a unique piece of trench art made during World War One – a crucifix made from bullets.
This artefact is a trench biscuit from the Boer War.
This artefact is an Indonesian Presentation Pistol. This is a 9mm calibre P-1 Pindad Automatic Pistol.
This artefact is an interesting figurine of King George V dressed in khaki military uniform with cap.
This artefact is a World War I tropical Pith Helmet. The Pith Helmet is made of cork and covered with a khaki drill twill cloth.
This artefact is a Tureen made by Royal Doulton which features the badge of the Canterbury Yeomanry Cavalry (CYC).
Surgical equipment is not normally for the squeamish, and a recent donation to the National Army Museum is no exception.
This artefact is a 1822 Pattern Cavalry sword & scabbard currently on display as part of the “Harnessed: New Zealand’s War Horses” exhibition.
This artefact is a horse tail from the Sinai Palestine Campaign in World War I.
This is a hand cranked air blower used for heating up food and ‘boiling the billy’ in a POW camp during World War II.
This bowl is a link back to New Zealand’s first Christmas following the battle of Gallipoli.
This wallet was a Christmas gift from the YMCA to New Zealand soldier Donald Cottle who was fighting as an infantryman on the Western Front.
This type of wide brimmed felt hat was commonly worn by British Empire Forces during the Second Boer War.
This artefact is a New Zealand Pattern Wheeled Carrier which were used in World War II by the Home Guard and later in the Korean War.
During the 2003 invasion of Iraq playing cards like these were used as a novel way to hunt for people wanted by the US forces.