ARMSTRONG, John Archibald
(Service number 55390)

Aliases Enlisted as Archibald John ARMSTRONG
First Rank Private Last Rank Private


Date 8 May 1895 Place of Birth Blenheim

Enlistment Information

Date Age
Address at Enlistment Maungati
Occupation Ploughman
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin Mrs Amy ARMSTRONG (mother), Moore Street, Ashburton
Religion Presbyterian
Medical Information

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation New Zealand Expeditionary Force
Unit, Squadron, or Ship 28th Reinforcements, Canterbury Infantry Regiment, C Company
Date 26 July 1917
Transport Ulimaroa
Embarked From Destination Plymouth, Devon, England
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With Canterbury Infantry

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

Dairy farmer


Date 26 December 1962 Age 67 years
Place of Death Rotorua
Memorial or Cemetery
Memorial Reference
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

John Archibald Armstrong was born on 8 May 1895 at Blenheim, the younger son and youngest child of John Thomas and Amelia (née Parker) Armstrong. Although he was born and died John Archibald Armstrong, he enlisted and served as Archibald John Armstrong. In April 1917, Archibald John Armstrong, a teamster, care of J. Shaw, Timaru, was one of 358 names drawn in the ballot for the South Canterbury Military District to fill vacancies in the 30th Reinforcements. He had previously enlisted voluntarily. A ploughman at Maungati, when he enlisted, single and Presbyterian, he named his mother as next- of-kin – Mrs Amy Armstrong, Moore Street, Ashburton.

The South Canterbury quota of the 30th Reinforcement consisting of 58 men, left Timaru on 28 May 1917, but not before they had been given a very hearty send-off at the Drill Shed, and at the Strathallan Street crossing. “The men appeared in the best of spirits,” as they were put through some elementary drill movements. They were addressed by the Mayor and by the Rev. J. H. Rogers. No country in the world possessed such a free Constitution as New Zealand, and in a spirit of determination to uphold it and all that made life worth living, they were going forth to gain the mastery over the enemy, said the Mayor. On this noble mission he wished them luck and a safe return. In going away they would take with them the love, the care and affection of many who would watch anxiously for news of them, and who would ever be solicitous of their welfare, said the Rev. Rogers. Then, headed by the 2nd (S.C.) Regimental Band, they moved off to the station. The train steamed out followed by the cheers of the crowd, and the answering shouts of the departing soldiers. Among the recruits was A. J. Armstrong.

Private A. J Armstrong actually embarked with the Canterbury Infantry Regiment of the 28th Reinforcements, leaving for Plymouth, England by the “Uimaroa” on 26 July 1917. A. J. Armstrong, 55390, returned home by the “Carpentaria” (Draft 247), which was expected at Lyttelton on 17 May 1919.

John Archibald Armstrong died on 26 December 1962 at Rotorua. In 1923 he had married Kathleen Rogers who died in 1975. Archibald’s older brother, Richmond Hamilton Armstrong, also served in the war with the New Zealand Forces.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [05 October 2021]; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [12 October 2021]; Timaru Herald, 18 April 1917, 29 May 1917, NZ Times, 3 May 1919 (Papers Past) [04, 08 & 12 October 2021]

External Links

Related Documents

No documents available. 

Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, SC branch NZSG

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 Logo. 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!

Your Details
Veteran Details
- you may attach an image or document up to 10MB