CARTWRIGHT, Walter Howell
(Service number 17621)

Aliases Dick
First Rank Gunner Last Rank WO 1 (Warrant Officer 1st Class)


Date 21 August 1894 Place of Birth Pleasant Point

Enlistment Information

Date 27 June 1916 Age 21 years
Address at Enlistment Geraldine
Occupation School Teacher
Previous Military Experience 2nd South Canterbury Regiment
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin James Cartwright (father) Pleasant Point
Religion Presbyterian
Medical Information Walter was 6 ft tall, weighed 160lb, had a maximum chest measurement of 38 inches and a minimum measurement of 35 inches. He was of a dark complexion, with blue eyes and brown hair.

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation New Zealand Field Artillery
Unit, Squadron, or Ship New Zealand Mounted Rifle Brigade Reinforcements
Date 2 January 1917
Transport HMNZT 73 Opawa
Embarked From Wellington, N.Z. Destination Plymouth via Capetown
Other Units Served With Divisional Ammunition Column. General Base Depot, New Zealand Education Department
Last Unit Served With New Zealand Education Department

Military Awards

Campaigns Western European 1918
Service Medals British War Medal; Victory Medal
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 October 1919 Reason Discharged on the termination of his period of engagement

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Gunshot wound to right hand and first finger, No 1 New Zealand Field Hospital

Post-war Occupations

School Teacher


Date Age
Place of Death
Memorial or Cemetery
Memorial Reference
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

Walter Howell Cartwright (Dick) was born on 21 August 1894 in Pleasant Point, the son of James Cartwright a farmer of Pleasant Point. Before the war Walter was a school teacher living in Geraldine.

Walter enlisted on 27 June 1916, in Trentham and the Medical Officer, G. E. Gabities conducted his medical exam in Timaru. He described Walter as being a 21 year old single man who was 6 feet tall and weighed 160lbs,of a dark complexion with blue eyes and brown hair. He had a maximum chest measurement of 38 inches and a minimum measurement of 35 inches. Walter was also listed as a Presbyterian.

Sergeant Walter Cartwright embarked from Wellington onboard HMNZT 73 Opawa with the New Zealand Mounted Rifle Brigade Reinforcements. They had a stopover in Capetown, where they transferred to the vessel Walmer Castle and reached Plymouth on 21 March 1917. When they marched into Sling Camp at Aldershot Cartwright was transferred to the 20th New Zealand Field Artillery and reverted back to the rank of gunner on 27 March 1917.

Gunner Cartwright left Aldershot for posting overseas on 10 February 1918. A week he later joined the Divisional Ammunition Column. Gunner Cartwright was reported wounded in action on 28 September 1918 and was admitted to hospital with a gunshot wound to his right hand and index finger. He was discharged back to his unit on 30 August 1918. He was again sent to the No1 New Zealand Field Hospital on 19 October 1918 (no details of his complaint were given), and rejoined his unit on 26 October 1918.

On 28 November 1918, Cartwright was detached from his unit and sent to the United Kingdom. He marched into Hornchurch from France on 6 December 1918. A little over a month later, on 18 January 1919, he embarked from Falkestone back to New Zealand.

However, Gunner Cartwright did not leave the army. He was promoted to Sergeant on 4 January 1919 and on the same day wass appointed temporary Warrant Officer 2nd class and 1st grade instructor. On 21 January 1919 he joined the New Zealand Education Department and was posted to the 1st Battalion, Wellington Regiment. On 28th January 1919 he was transferred to the South Island Battalion. Warrant Officer 2nd Class Cartwright was posted back to England on 17 March 1919 and stationed at the General Base Depot in Hornchurch. On 22 May 1919 he was granted leave and relinquished his commission to revert back in rank to Sergeant. A month later, on 30 June 1919, he was reappointed Temporary Warrant Officer 1st Class and 1st grade instructer. He was posted to the General Base Depot and then to C Group in Torquay before embarking for New Zealand on the Tainui on 8 August 1919. Warrant Officer 1st Class Mr Cartwright had been in the services for 2 years 265 days. He was discharged on 21 October 1919 on the termination of the period of his engagement. He received the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

When Walter left the army he returned to South Canterbury to live in Clandeboye, where he resumed teaching at the Temuka District High School. Walter married Edith Hammond on 7 September 1920 at St Johns Church, in Rangiora. Edith was the daughter of George and Eva Hammond (nee Deans) of Woodbury. In 1922 Walter left the Temuka District High School to take up sole charge of the school at Clandeboye.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [16 August 2015]; NZ Defence Force Personnel Records (Archives NZ ref, AABK 18805 W5539 0039812) [26 September 2016].

External Links

Related Documents

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Researched and Written by

Dianne Hall

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