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Museum asks for help matching names to faces

Tairawhiti Museum is seeking assistance in identifying the men in this photograph dating back to the outbreak of World War 1.

The image is dated December 1914 and shows men of No 2 Platoon of the Samoan Expeditionary Force (SEF).

About 1400 New Zealanders served in the SEF who occupied the-then German colony of Samoa shortly after war broke out in August 1914.

Museum director Eloise Wallace said the photo came from the RSA.

But it was possible the photograph was handed in by a veteran, or descendant of a veteran who was not living in Gisborne in 1914.

Mrs Wallace has not, so far, succeeded in tracking down any soldier named on the back.

Anyone who can help identify a soldier is asked to contact Mrs Wallace on eloisewallace@tairawhitimuseum.org.nz or on 06 867 3832.

The names, deciphered from the handwritten record on the back of the photo, are: Back row, Daniels (store tent?), Fenton (warden), Howlett (warden), Jones (elect), Bennett (?), Salt (elect), Perry (horse lines), G Bell, Brown (carpenter), McCartney (carpenter), Hewson (carpenter), Adams (boot maker?), Bateman.Second row: Black (boot maker?), H Henderson (post office), Brogan, Caldwell (?), Hammond (Sergt), Guiness?, W Christophers, Harrison (Sergt), Williamson (?), Johnson (horselines), Burnett (carpenter), Peryer? (?), O’Brien (ganger?).Third row: Spencer (shops), Sutherland (engine driver), Burke (?), Joyce (orderly), Marratt (horselines), Olsen, WJ Martin (painter), Wells (wireless gang), Helm? (shops), Smyrk? (asst driver), Henderson (shops).Fourth row: Johnston (anything), Wilson (carpenter) J H Morton? (wireless layer), Shore (orderly), Williams, Veysey?, Simpson (saddler), Phillips, Robinson.Front, buglers Ashley and McCain.