ACTON, Arthur
(Service number 9/1008)

First Rank Trooper Last Rank Sergeant


Date 8 February 1896 Place of Birth Cave, Canterbury

Enlistment Information

Date Age 19 years
Address at Enlistment C/o J. Landreth, Katea
Occupation Farmer
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin Harry ACTON (father), Grassmead, Invercargill
Religion Presbyterian
Medical Information

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation 5th Reinforcements
Unit, Squadron, or Ship Otago Mounted Rifles
Transport Maunganui or Tahiti or Aparima
Embarked From Wellington Destination Suez, Egypt
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

12 October 1917 - wounded

Post-war Occupations



Date 1 August 1946 Age 50 years
Place of Death Christchurch
Memorial or Cemetery Eastern Cemetery, Invercargill
Memorial Reference General Section, Block 32, Plot 602
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

Arthur Acton was born on 8 February 1896 at Cave near Timaru, the oldest son of Harry and Nina Amelia (née Smith) Acton, and was baptised at St Albans, Pleasant Point. He was educated at Opihi and Pleasant Point schools in South Canterbury until the family moved to Invercargill. Arthur played football for Waikiwi Club, and it was on the Waikiwi roll of Honour that his name was to be later inscribed. He was also a cadet for the Territorials at Waikiwi, winning several prizes in their matches. He was a farmer at Katea in Southland when he enlisted, at the age of just nineteen. Trooper A. Acton embarked with the Otago Mounted Rifles of the 5th Reinforcements, departing from Wellington for Suez, Egypt.

On 2 March 1917 he wrote home – “We are at present camped near a Y.M.C.A. and a tip-top canteen. We can get a cup of hot tea and biscuits at the Y.M. whenever we feel like having one. At the canteen, we can got almost anything at very small cost, so you see we are not in a bad place. The Y.M.C.A. is one of the best institutions here, in fact, it is the best at the present time. It does not matter where you go you will always find one of their huts nearby. I have come across them two or three hundred yards behind the firing-line. We received some gift parcels about four days ago, and the one which I drew contained a real good cake and some sweets. Didn’t we haves tangi that night! It is a shame how full we were when we went to bed. We have a good cook in our section now; and he turns out some meals fit for s king. He makes us a duff twice a week and with it some real good sauce. I don’t know how we would get on if we were to lose him.” Mrs Acton was active in preparing those gift parcels.

Mr H. Acton received word that his son had been wounded on 12 October 1917. Although Arthur was studying electrical engineering when he enlisted, he took up carpentry after the war. Arthur married Myrtle Alexandrina Neas in 1925. He died on 1 August 1946 at Christchurch and was buried at the Eastern Cemetery in Invercargill. Myrtle died 31 years later. The name A. Acton is the first of many inscribed on the Gallipoli plaque attached to the Waikiwi Memorial Hall.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [08 June 2021]; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [31 May 2021]; School Admission records (South Canterbury Branch NZSG) [08 June 2021]; Southland Times, 23 August 1913, 9 February 1914, 3 May 1917, 31 October 1917 (Papers Past) [08 June 2021]; Eastern Cemetery headstone image & burial record (Invercargill City Council) [08 June 2021]; NZ History [08 June 2021]

External Links

Related Documents

No documents available. 

Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, SC branch NZSG

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

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