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Historic WW1 Kiwi Military Records Now Available Online

Historic WW1 Kiwi Military Records Now Available for the First Time Online

Ancestry.com.au releases over 40 million historic military collections, free to search for a limited time this ANZAC Day Weekend

21 April 2011 – in honour of ANZAC Day, over 40 million historic military records including details of New Zealanders who fought in WWI and WWII will be free to search on Ancestry.com.au, Australia and New Zealand’s leading family history website, from Friday 22 to Tuesday 26 April, giving New Zealanders the opportunity to search for the military heroes in their family.

For the first time, the New Zealand Army Nominal Rolls from World War I 1917-1919 and World War II 1939-1948 have been included as part of the limited time free online collection. These records are the published Alphabetical Rolls of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force from World War I and volumes of the Nominal Roll: Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force from World War II. Previously, they had only been available on microfiche film in official record collections.

Containing over 225,000 names, the rolls are alphabetised by surname and grouped in date ranges by embarkation date. They list name, rank, regimental number, unit or regiment and next of kin. Records may also include details of last residence in New Zealand, marital status, occupation, recruiting district and name of reinforcement draft.

With over 260,000 enlisted Kiwi soldiers in World Wars I and II, families can easily search through indexed rolls that provide information on soldiers and other individuals who embarked from New Zealand as part of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force (1NZEF) or the Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force (2NZEF).

New Zealand sent almost 10 per cent of its population to battle in both World Wars, where they bravely fought with other British Commonwealth forces in regions including Europe, North Africa, the Middle East and the Pacific. Post-war calculations indicated that New Zealand suffered the greatest human loss, with the highest ratio of soldiers killed per capita of population amongst Commonwealth countries.

New Zealand WWI (1914-1918) and WWII (1939-1948) history by the numbers :

• 120,000 New Zealanders enlisted in WWI, of whom 103,000 served overseas, including 2,227 Maori and 458 Pacific Islanders.

• In total, 18,500 New Zealanders died in WWI, and nearly 50,000 more were wounded. More than 2,700 died at Gallipoli and 12,500 on the Western Front.

• 140,000 New Zealanders served in WWII, with 11,928 fatalities – that is almost one in every 12 New Zealanders that went to war.

Ancestry.com.au’s Family Historian Christine Clement comments:”These new records open a window into our proud military heritage and offer details of troops sent overseas to battle in World War I and World War II.

These records will be of great interest to Kiwis with military heritage and want to research their family’s wartime history.”

Ancestry.com.au’s extensive online collection of military databases from New Zealand, Australia, the UK, Canada and the US can help you to discover a variety of information about your ancestors who served. The collections include records of enlistment dates, battles fought, performance on the field, medals awarded and for the many who never returned, locations of final resting places.

To start searching, all you need to do is enter the name of an ancestor. Register for free and you can view original military records dating back to 1793.

The military collections free to explore in Ancestry.com.au’s ANZAC Day weekend promotion include:
ANZAC Memorial (1914-1918)
UK Military Campaign Medal and Award Rolls (1793-1949)
UK Naval Medal and Award Rolls (1793-1972)
UK Citations of the Distinguished Conduct Medal (1914-1920)
New Zealand Army WWI Nominal Rolls (1914-1919)
New Zealand Army WWII Nominal Rolls (1939-1948)
British Commonwealth War Graves Register (1914-1918)
British WWI Service records(1914-1920)
British WWI Pension records (1914-1920)
British WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards (1914-1920)
The National Roll of the Great War (1914-1918)
Canadian Soldiers of WWI (1914-1918)
US WWI Draft Registration Cards (1917-1918)
US WWII Army Enlistment Records (1938-1946)
To begin searching your own family’s history this ANZAC Day weekend, visit www.ancestry.com.au.
You can also honour the heroes in your family by posting a tribute on our Facebook Tribute Wall Facebook.com/ancestry.com.au

ENDS

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