BLAIR, Joseph
(Service number 76572)

First Rank Private Last Rank


Date 28 August 1896 Place of Birth Pleasant Point

Enlistment Information

Date 29 January 1917 Age 20 years 5 months
Address at Enlistment Hilton
Occupation Shepherd
Previous Military Experience Senior Cadets
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin Miss Eileen BLAIR (sister), c/o Mrs Patrick, Gapes Valley, Geraldine; Miss Gena Boddy (friend), Albury, South Canterbury
Religion Roman Catholic
Medical Information Height 5 feet 4½ inches. Weight 111 lbs. Chest measurement 30-32 inches. Complexion fair. Eyes grey. Hair fair. Sight - both eyes 6/18. Hearing & colour vision normal. Limbs well formed. Full & perfect movement of all joints. Chest well formed. Heart & lungs normal. Free from hernia, varicocele, varicose veins, haemorrhoids, inveterate or contagious skin disease. Vaccinated. Good bodily & mental health. No slight defects.

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation
Unit, Squadron, or Ship
Embarked From Destination
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With

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 Reason

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Post-war Occupations


Date 6 December 1974 Age 78 years
Place of Death
Memorial or Cemetery Orowaiti Cemetery, Westport
Memorial Reference
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

Joseph Blair was the son of George and Margaret (also known as Mary, née Stewart) Blair, and a brother of George Turnell and Robert Stewart Blair. The father of the family died when the children were young, and thereafter they were cared for by various people. Joseph, under the guardianship of George Boddye, was educated at the Fairlie and Albury schools. His mother, who was reported in ill health when his brother William died while working in a paddock in April 1911, had died by 1917.

Joseph had been previously rejected as unfit for military service - "Below Standard".He was called up while working as a farm hand at Hilton. In January 1918 Joseph had received notice to proceed to Wellington, but when he and Bryant, also of Hilton, went along to the entertainment provided by the Temuka Patriotic Entertainment Committee for the C4 men to go into camp to test their fitness, they found that no arrangement had been made for them to go. Consequently they had to wait till later.

Come early February he was one of 41 men ordered to parade before leaving for camp as part of the 36th Reinforcement draft. Joseph was one of those entertained by the Temuka Patriotic Entertainment Committee in Teesdale’s Rooms, “a first-class spread being provided”. Major Kennedy, the Chairman of the Pleasant Valley Patriotic Committee, Mayor and the Rev. Norris made short speeches. Cheers were given for the men before thye were accompanied to the railway station and cheered again as the train left.

Some time after the war he went away to Ngakawau on the West Coast where he engaged in mining. He appealed, the appeal being dismissed because he did not appear at the hearing. From the mid 1960s he resided at the Kynnersley Home at Westport. Joseph died on 6 December 1974, aged 78 years, and is buried in the Orowaiti Cemetery at Westport. .


NZ Defence Force Personnel Records (Archives NZ ref. AABK 18805 W5520 0015441) [06 January 2017]; School Admission records (South Canterbury Branch NZSG) [11 December 2016]; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [27 December 2016]; Probate record (Archives NZ/FamilySearch) [27 December 2016]; NZ Electoral Rolls ( [27 December 2016]; Timaru Herald, 21 April 1911, 25 November 1916, 1 & 27 February 1918, Temuka Leader, 15 January 1918, 12 March 1918 (Papers Past) [27 December 2016]

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