ADAMSON, John Quinn
(Service number 8/1)

Aliases Known as Jack
First Rank Private Last Rank Corporal


Date 10 April 1894 Place of Birth Albury, South Canterbury

Enlistment Information

Date (1) 18 August 1914; (2) 16 October 1916 Age (1) 20 years; (2) 22 years
Address at Enlistment Alexandra South
Occupation (1) Labourer; (2) Blacksmith
Previous Military Experience Territorial Forces - 3 years; Alexandra D.H.S. Cadets
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin (1) John ADAMSON (father), Alexandra South; (2) Nora ADAMSON (mother), Alexandra South, Otago Central
Religion Roman Catholic
Medical Information

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation (1) Main Body; (2) New Zealand Expeditionary orce
Unit, Squadron, or Ship (1) Otago Infantry Battalion; (2) 22nd Reinforcements, Otago Infantry Regiment
Date (1) 16 October 1914; (2) 16 February 1917
Transport (1) Ruapehu or Hawkes Bay; (2) Aparima
Embarked From (1) Port Chalmers, Dunedin Destination (1) Suez, Egypt; (2) Plymouth, Devon, England
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With

Military Awards

Campaigns Egyptian; Balkan - Gallipoli, Mudros, Lemnos
Service Medals 1914-1915 Star; 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 (1) 13 June 1916; (2) 14 October 1919 Reason No longer fit . . . .

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Post-war Occupations



Date 10 September 1956 Age 62 years
Place of Death Dunedin
Memorial or Cemetery Andersons Bay Cemetery, Dunedin
Memorial Reference Block 198, Plot 20
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

John Quinn Adamson, known as Jack, was born on 10 April 1894 at Albury, South Canterbury, the oldest of the four children of John ((Jack) and Honora (Nora, née Quinn) Adamson. John Adamson who was born at Temuka of Scottish parents and Nora Quinn who hailed from County Kerry, Scotland married in 1893 at Albury. Jack Adamson was an alpine guide at Mount Cook for some years, moving to Central Otago in about 1902 and then to Palmerston South in 1904. Young John started his schooling at Fairlie, then transferred to Millers Flat School, Central Otago, and from there to Palmerston in April 1904. Five years later he left for Alexandra.

John enlisted on the outbreak of war – on 18 August 1914 at Oamaru, the first to volunteer for active service. He had served for three years with the Territorial Forces and with the Alexandra D.H.S. Cadets. A labourer, single and Roman Catholic, he named his father as next-of-kin – John Adamson, Alexandra South. Private J. Q. Adamson embarked with the Main Body, Otago Infantry Battalion, leaving from Port Chalmers, Dunedin, for Suez, Egypt, on 16 October 1914. Wounded at the Dardanelles, he was admitted to the First Southern General Hospital at Birmingham and moved from there to a convalescent home. On 26 December 1915 he disembarked at Malta, slightly sick. Returning invalided to New Zealand by the troopship “Tahiti, he reached Dunedin on 15 March 1916 and was discharged on 13 June 1916, having served in Egypt, and at Gallipoli, Mudros and Lemnos.

After re-enlisting on 16 October 1916 at Alexandra, he served in the UK only. He was a blacksmith and named his mother as next-f-kin – Nora Adamson, Alexandra South, Otago South. Corporal J. Q. Adamson embarked with the Otago Infantry Regiment of the 22nd Reinforcements per the “Aparima”, leaving on 16 February 1917 for Plymouth, England. John Quinn Adamson married Rosa May Hiscock on 28 January 1919 at Salisbury, England. He returned to New Zealand per the “Athenic”, leaving on 14 July 1919 and arriving about 1 September. He was finally discharged on 14 October 1919, having given 4 years 299 days of service. He was awarded the 1914-1915 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

John and Rosa had five sons and one daughter. One son was named Aidan, the religious name of John’s sister Ellen Jeanie Adamson. Jack served with the home Service in World War Two. John Quinn Adamson died on 10 September 1956 at Dunedin, aged 62 years. He was buried at Andersons Bay Cemetery, Dunedin, Rosa with him in 1978. Henry (Harry) Adamson who was killed in action at the Somme in 1916 was a cousin of Jack Adamson. Another cousin, Francis John Mallett, also served in World War One.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [02 July 2023]; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [02 July 2023]; School Admission records (South Canterbury & Dunedin branches NZSG) [02 July 2023]; Andersons Bay Cemetery burial record (Dunedin City Council) [02 July 2023]; Andersons Bay Cemetery headstone image (Find A Grave) [02 July 2023]; Otago Daily Times, North Otago Times, 23 June 1915 (Papers Past) [02 July 2023]

External Links

Related Documents

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Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, South Canterbruy Genealogy Society

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

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