National Army Museum, Waiouru, New Zealand : World War One Centenary

6/3318 Private Henry Thomas Foreman


Return to Battle of the Somme Exhibition

6/3318 Private Henry Thomas Foreman



Henry Thomas Foreman was born on 13 January 1883 in Auckland. At the outbreak of WWI, he was married to Annie, had two young children, Henry (4) and Therissa (8) and was working as a Driver for Auckland Tramways. Henry enlisted on 24 August 1915 and went into training at Trentham Camp. He embarked from Wellington with the 12th (Nelson) Company, Canterbury Infantry Battalion on 13 November 1915 aboard the Willochra bound for Suez, Egypt and arrived on 20 December.


After a short period of training and patrolling, Henry Foreman embarked for France on 6 April 1916 and once at Marseilles, moved to Northern France and the villages to the west of Armentieres. In August, the New Zealand Division was withdrawn from the area to prepare for the battles at the Somme.

On 15 September 1916, the ‘Kiwis’ moved to the Somme and experienced their first real taste of trench warfare around Flers. On 17 September, the men attacked an area known as Goose Alley and came under heavy machine gun and artillery fire. At some stage during the attack, Henry Foreman was killed in action, probably from artillery fire which ripped apart the men from Canterbury Battalion’s 12th Company. Henry was 33.

in-loving-wishes An embroidered postcard sent to Henry Foreman’s wife Annie

6/3318 Private Henry Foreman’s body was never recovered and he is commemorated on the New Zealand Memorial, Caterpillar Valley Cemetery, Longueval, Somme, France.

The postcards below were written to his wife Annie, though aren’t written by Henry himself and are dated after his death at the Somme. They’re commonly known as WWI Silks and were sought after embroidered postcards made by French and Belgian women around the period 1914-1918.

Memorial Plaque

Medal Collection


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Embroidered Postcards

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