June 1, 2023

Archives New Zealand and National Library open the files on the First World War

Today marks 100 years since England declared war on Germany

“More than 141,000 First World War service files are now available online, adding to the wealth of information detailing New Zealanders experience of the war made available by Archives New Zealand and the National Library.

“In possibly the largest and most complicated digitisation project in New Zealand’s history, Archives New Zealand staff identified over 141,000 First World War files, scanned the often crumbling, fragile pages and then digitised them and published them online.

“All 141,000 files can now be accessed at: http://www.archives.govt.nz/world-war-one

“As the keeper of the public record, Archives New Zealand is proud to make this fascinating, sometimes poignant, record available to everyone,” said Chief Archivist, Marilyn Little.

“Archives New Zealand and National Library of New Zealand First World War centenary resources can be found at:

Read more here…

(Irfanview is possibly the best programme to view the files.)



100th Anniversary of Discovery of South Pole was 3pm yesterday

One hundred years ago on the 14 December 1911, Roald Amundson won the race to the South Pole.

From the New York Times:

When Roald Amundsen’s ship, the Fram, left Norway on Aug. 9, 1910, it carried, in Amundsen’s words, “nineteen men, ninety-seven dogs, four pigs, six carrier pigeons, and one canary.” The ship was nearly 20 years old, and the expedition leader, Amundsen, was 38. He was already a formidable polar explorer, but this voyage to Antarctica and the South Pole made him one of the greatest explorers who ever lived.

On Dec. 14, a century ago, Amundsen and the four members of his team reached the South Pole. “That day,” he wrote, “was a beautiful one,” and at 3 o’clock in the afternoon they planted the flag of Norway, each man with one hand on the flagpole. Like so many other days on that polar journey, that day was “like a pleasure trip,” as Amundsen later reported. The weather was good, but even better was the planning. The Norwegians were born skiers, excellent dog handlers and skilled navigators. They proceeded across the ice exactly as they had done across the ocean, fixing their location again and again by dead reckoning and with sextants. They also left innumerable cairns and markers to guide them on their return.

In his book, “The South Pole,” Amundsen makes none of this sound heroic. He admired the English for their “pluck and grit,” but what you feel in reading his account is joy and adventure. Even now, Amundsen is too little admired, mainly because his straightforward success was eclipsed by what a member of Robert Falcon Scott’s expedition called the “first-rate tragedy” of Scott’s polar push, which ended in the deaths of Scott and his four-man team.

On Dec. 14, Amundsen was at the pole, writing a letter to Scott wishing him a safe return. Scott was 34 days behind him, on a different route. Scott’s journal for that day reads, “We are just starting our march with no very hopeful outlook.”


From the Smiths:


Updated 10 December 2011: Life for Those Left Behind (Craig Smith’s Health) page 6 click here


Needing help for your home schooling journey:



Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

‘Battle at the Gate’ by Jenny Jenkins

‘Battle at the Gate’ by Jenny Jenkins

Battle at the Gate is a kids history book written about the last battle of the New Zealand wars, the Battle of Gate Pa, Tauranga. It is written by homeschooling mum, Jenny Jenkins, and published by Penguin, and teaches the character qualities of compassion and forgiveness.
In 1869 British warships began landing soldiers in Tauranga, and local Maori built a pa to defend themselves. On April 29th almost 2000 soldiers attacked the pa after it had been shelled all day by heavy artillery. The 200 Maori inside the pa were mostly Christians, having had a resident missionary for about 30 years. They beat back the British charging into the pa, and won the battle.
That night a Maori woman risked her life to take water to a dying British officer.
A poignant story stunningly illustrated by award winning artist, Bruce Potter. Suitable for ages 7 to adult. Great story for Home Educators, Bible in Schools, Sunday School and Good News Clubs.

New Zealand history – Timeline of events.

A time line for our kiwi children!

New Zealand history. An overview covering the pre-historic, colonial and modern periods. Timeline of events.