BROWN, James Hudson
(Service number 12/4522)

First Rank Private Last Rank Private


Date 19 November 1897 Place of Birth Darjeeling, India

Enlistment Information

Date 16 November 1915 Age 17 years 11 months
Address at Enlistment 36 Napier Terrace, Napier; Timaru
Occupation Baker
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin Mrs H. Ryland BROWN (mother), 36 Napier Terrace, Npier
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 11th Reinforcements, Auckland Infantry Battalion, A Company
Date 1 April 1916
Transport Tahiti or Maunganui
Embarked From Wellington Destination Suez, Egypt
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With Wellington Regiment

Military Awards

Campaigns Western European
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 7 August 1919 Reason

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Post-war Occupations

Cordial maker; mechanic


Date 3 March 1967 Age 69 years
Place of Death Pleasant Point
Memorial or Cemetery Timaru Cemetery
Memorial Reference Services Section, Row 126, Plot 11
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

James Hudson Brown was born on 19 November 1897 at Darjeeling, India, the third son of Henry Rylands and Jane Halliday (née Symington) Brown. Henry R. Brown, born in Lancashire, England, and Jane H. Symington, born in Dumfries, Scotland, had married in 1886 in India. Six children were born at Darjeeling, India – George Howard in 1888, Isabel Halliday in 1890, Annie Rylands in 1893, William Symington in 1894, James Hudson in 1897 (it appears) and Henry Alexander in 1900. Henry Rylands Brown was a missionary in India. In 1911 the family was in England. Jane and three sons – George, James and Henry – were at Canterbury; Henry senior, a Baptist minister, was visiting at Hawkhurst, Kent; Isabel and William were with a Symington aunt at Bromley. Jane was with her parents at Birkenhead, England, in 1891, George and Isabel with her; while Henry, a missionary, was with his widowed mother in Lambeth, London. The Rev Henry Rylands Brown died on 12 May 1913 at Canterbury, England. On the outbreak of war in 1914, Jane and her four sons were in New Zealand.

George Howard Brown was the first of the brothers to enlist wih the New Forces, doing so on 13 August 1914 at Napier. He had previously served with the Bombay Volunteer Artilleries until leaving India. He named his mother as next-on-kin Mrs Jane Brown 36 Napier terrace, Napier; and his sister Isabel – Miss I. H. Brown, C/o The Matron’s Office, St Thomas Hospital, Westminster. George – who may have been known as Howard – returned to New Zealand in 1915 and was discharged in 1916. He married Jean Macrae in 1916. They had a son, Douglas Rylands Brown, and a daughter, Phyllis Halliday Brown. George and Jean lived in Napier, where both died, George in 1941.

William Symington Brown enlisted on 5 February 1915 and on 16 November 1915 at Trentham, it was James’ turn; he was not 18 years old, but he put his age up. He was a baker, single and Presbyterian. His address was initially 36 Napier Terrace, Napier, before changing to Timaru. His next-of-kin was his mother – Mrs H. Ryland Brown, 36 Napier Terrace, Napier. Private J. H. Brown embarked with the Auckland Infantry Battalion of the 11th Reinforcements, departing from Wellington for Suez, Egypt, on 1 April 1916. A hospital report in February 1918, listed J. H. Brown, 12/4522, of Timaru, as both a severe case and a not severe case. Draft 159, which was due in New Zealand in May 1918, brought J. H. Brown, 12/4522, Timaru, “home from the firing line”. He was discharged on 7 August 1919 and was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

There in 1919 at 65 Grey Road, Timaru, with their widowed mother (Jane Halliday Brown), were James Hudson Brown, soldier, and William Symington Brown, soldier. Mrs Ryland Brown had donated to the YMCA Fund at Timaru in January 1918. James married Sybil Moore in 1935, after which they lived at Pleasant Point. He died on 5 March 1967 at Pleasant Point, aged 69 years. His next-of-kin at death was his widow, Mrs S. M. Brown, Opihi Bridge, Pleasant Point. He was buried in the Services Section of Timaru Cemetery, Sybil with him in 1981.

Two brothers of James also served with the New Zealand Forces – George Howard Brown and William Symington Brown. His mother, Jane Halliday Brown, died on 26 September 1938 at Dulwich Hill, New South Wales, and was buried in the Prsbyterian Cemetery, Rockwood. “By deceased’s request, no flowers at funeral, but will friends take them to the sick instead.”. She was survived by her six children – G. Howard, of New Zealand, Isabel H. Garson, of England, William S. of Victoria, James H. of New Zealand, Annie R. of Peru, and Henry Alexander, of Sydney. She had gone from England to Australia in 1922, perhaps to her youngest son. James spent time with his mother at Summer Hill, New South Wales, in the early 1930s. His brother William and his wife travelled to Sydney in 1931.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [30 June 2022]; 1891 & 1911 England census returns ( [30 June 2022]; Timaru Herald, 17 January 1918, Dominion, 27 February 1918, 4 May 1918 (Papers Past) [02 July 2022]; Sydney Morning Herald, 27 September 1938 (Trove) [03 July 2022]; NZ Electoral Rolls ( [30 June 2022; 01 July 2022]; Timaru Cemetery headstone image (Timaru District Council) [30 June 2022]; Ausralia Electoral Rolls ( [03 July 2022]

External Links

Related Documents

No documents available. 

Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, South Canterbury Genealogy Society

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