PELVIN, Henry William
(Service number 7/1882)

Aliases Harry
First Rank Sergeant Last Rank Farrier


Date 23 July 1888 Place of Birth Waimate

Enlistment Information

Date Age
Address at Enlistment Mill Road, Waimate
Occupation Blacksmith
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin A. Pelvin (father), Mill Road, Waimate, New Zealand
Religion Presbyterian
Medical Information

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation 8th Reinforcements
Unit, Squadron, or Ship Canterbury Mounted Rifles
Date 13 November 1915
Transport Willochra or Tofua
Embarked From Wellington, New Zealand Destination Suez, Egypt
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With New Zealand Field Artillery

Military Awards

Service Medals
Military Awards

Award Circumstances and Date

No information

Prisoner of War Information

Date of Capture
Where Captured and by Whom
Actions Prior to Capture
PoW Serial Number
PoW Camps
Days Interned
Liberation Date


Date 21 January 1919 Reason No longer physically fit for service

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Post-war Occupations


Date 11 November 1923 Age 35
Place of Death Rannadale Soldiers Hospital, Christchurch
Cause Died after discharge from the NZEF from wounds inflicted or disease contracted while on active service
Memorial or Cemetery Waimate Old Cemetery
Memorial Reference
New Zealand Memorials On Memorial wall, Timaru

Biographical Notes

HENRY WILLIAM (HARRY) PELVIN, (b. 23 Jul 1888, Waimate; d. 11 Nov 1923, Rannadale Soldiers Hospital, Christchurch). Harry Pelvin was the eldest son of Alfred Pelvin and was a blacksmith by trade. He had worked as a ploughman, harvester mill hand, and farm hand .

Henry was an excellent cyclist and competed in sports events over the years throughout the area. His athletic ability was particularly recognised and featured regulary being given the highest scratching when handicap lists given prior to racing eg: Waimate Caledonian Society: 20 Dec 1906 Handicaps for the Boxing Day Sports Cycling Events - Two Miles - H. Pelvin 175 yds; One Mile Handicap - H. Pelvin 110yds; One Mile and a-Half - H. Pelvin 145 yds; Tliree Miles - H. Pelvin 240 yds;

Local sports events were a popular entertainment, drawing large crowds from the wider community and the various diverse events held catered for all interests. A typical listing was the 1906 Waihao District Sports, awarding monetory prices and was well organised. It featured trotting and hack races, horse-jumping competitions (all on which there was a considerable amount of speculation with bookies apparently doing good business); three-legged, sack and foot races for varied ages and distances, high, hop, step and jump and long jump events; putting 161b Shot, Irish jigs and Scottich dancing; wrestling, Bagpipe competitions and some like the Oamaru Caledonian Society 1902 had tossing the cabar, throwing the hammer and at night had firoworks - rockets, bombs, and Catherine. His father Alfred Pelvin was chairman of the Glenavy School committee and would often call Henry for his assistance for entertainment at concerts for a recitation - he was a popular dance musician.

Henry enlisted in 1915 and soon recieved promotion: Evening Post, 22 Oct 1915: "TRAINING CAMPS - TAUHERENIKAU NOTES: LATEST APPOINTMENTS: The 8th Mounteds, encamped at Tauherenikau, drew their horses on the16th and 17th instant. Temporary appointments of n.c.o.'s have been approved by the Camp Commandant (Major N P, Adams) as follows : To be farrier-corporal, Pte H. Pelvin"

While on active service though, Henry fell sick, but the Timaru Herald reported on his recovery on 3 Aug 1917: "The following South Canterbury names appear in the official hospital progress report:— Removed from dangerously ill list.— Private H. Pelvin (Waimate)." Only eight months later though he was once again hospitalised with sickness, leading to his discharge as no longer physically fit for service.

Henry died on 11 November 1923 at Rannadale Soldiers Hospital, Christchurch, from the longer-term effects of mustard gas exposure during his active service. He was buried in the Old Waimate Cemetery.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [30 Dec 2013]; Military Record - Archives New Zealand, Wellington Office Item ID R20800423; see also Winsome Griffin's family history pages at; SCRoll web submission by W Griffin, 4 December 2015; SCRoll web submission, 13 February 2020

External Links

Related Documents

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Researched and Written by

John Sutherland, SC branch NZSG

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

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