MILES, James Edwin
(Service number 72040)
|First Rank||Private||Last Rank|
|Date||15 August 1886||Place of Birth||Ashburton|
|Date||14 September 1917||Age||31 years|
|Address at Enlistment||P.O., Fairlie|
|Previous Military Experience|
|Marital Status||Single then married|
|Next of Kin||Mrs Pamela MILES (wife), care of Post-office, Fairlie|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Served with||NZ Armed Forces||Served in||Army|
|Body on Embarkation||New Zealand Expeditionary Force|
|Unit, Squadron, or Ship||38th Reinforcements, A Company|
|Date||5 June 1918|
|Embarked From||Destination||Liverpool, Merseyside, England|
|Other Units Served With|
|Last Unit Served With|
Award Circumstances and Date
Prisoner of War Information
|Date of Capture|
|Where Captured and by Whom|
|Actions Prior to Capture|
|PoW Serial Number|
Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses
|Date||20 August 1953||Age||67 years|
|Place of Death||Christchurch|
|Memorial or Cemetery||Ruru Lawn Cemetery, Christchurch|
|Memorial Reference||Block !, Plot 312|
|New Zealand Memorials|
James Edwin Miles, perhaps known as Edwin or Edward, was born on 15 August 1886 at Ashburton, the fourth son of Joseph and Rebecca (née Dockray) Miles. His father died in July 1913 at Ashburton and his mother in October 1915. In 1916 James was listed on the Reserve Rolls as a blacksmith at Fairlie, where he had been living for some years. He enlisted at Timaru on 14 September 1917, when he was single. On 14 November he married Pamela Annan, who was named as his next-of-kin.
Private J. E. Miles embarked with the 38th Reinforcements on 5 June 1918 per the “Remuera”, headed for Liverpool, England. His daughter, Josephine Annie Messines Miles, was born at Fairlie in October 1918. J. E. Miles, 72040, returned to New Zealand aboard the “Chupra”, one of 732 soldiers due at Lyttelton about July 22nd, 1919. James and Pamela lived at Fairlie for many years, retiring to Christchurch in the late 1940s. He died on 20 August 1953 at Christchurch and was buried in Ruru Lawn Cemetery.
Two brothers of James Edwin Miles – John William Miles (known as Jack) and Thomas Albert Miles (known as Tom, and enlisted as Thomas Richard Miles) – were on a holiday visit to Sydney when war broke out. They both enlisted with the Australian Imperial Force on 27 August 1914 at Randwick, New South Wales. They embarked at Alexandria for Gallipoli on 5 April 1915. On 2 May 1915 both men were reported missing. Subsequently a Court of Enquiry determined that both had been killed in action on 3 May 1915 at Gallipoli. It was in September 1915 that Mrs J. Miles, of Ashburton – their mother who was their nominated next-of-kin – was advised of any casualty, and then the information was erroneous. A year later, their sister Mrs Pogson, received a cable advising of their fate. Harry Miles, the youngest of the six adult sons of Joseph and Rebecca, had embarked with the Tenth Reinforcements of the New Zealand Forces by this time.
Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [30 April 2021]; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [30 April 2021]; Ruru Lawn Cemetery, Christchurch, burial records (Christchurch City Council) [01 May 2021]; NZ Electoral Rolls (ancestry.com.au) [02 May 2021]; Hastings Standard, 23 June 1915, Sun, 17 September 1915, Colonist, 20 September 1915, 23 May 1916, Press, 26 May 1916, NZ Times, 4 July 1919 (Papers Past)
No documents available.
Researched and Written by
Currently Assigned to
Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License unless otherwise stated.
Tell us more
Do you have information that could be added to this story? Or related images that you are happy to share? Submit them here!