World War I commemorations

2014 is the anniversary of the start of World War I.  Just over 100,000 New Zealanders served in the war, from a population then of barely one million. Of those, more than 18,000 died and over 40,000 were wounded. Most were young men, and nearly one in five who served did not return. The growth of attendances at the Anzac day services shows that people of all generations have a lasting interest in WWI, and a website called New Zealand WW100 has been set up by the Government as a place where New Zealand First World War centenary projects and activities can be shared, including official state ceremonies and community initiatives.  Here are a few that have already started.

Christchurch City Libraries already has a presence on the website with links to our information on  Conscientious Objectors and Nurses and other Medical Personnel. The library will be very much involved in these commemorations and as time goes on you will hear more about this, but in the mean time we have already started ordering some books that the publishing world, anticipating big sales and massive interest have started to produce.

Cover of WoundedCover of The Long ShadowCover of Empires of the dead

95 years ago today: Armistice Day in Christchurch

Photo of Crowd in Cathedral Square, Christchurch, celebrating Armistice Day.
Crowd in Cathedral Square, Christchurch, celebrating Armistice Day. Head, Samuel Heath, d 1948 :Negatives. Ref: 1/1-007108-G. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22898377

Armistice Day marks the anniversary of the agreement that ended the First World War (1914 – 1918) and commemorates the sacrifice of those who died serving New Zealand in this and all wars and armed conflicts. The eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month marks the moment when hostilities ceased on the Western Front in 1918, with the signing of the Armistice.

The 2013 Armistice Day Commemoration in Christchurch will be held from 10.50am to 12pm at the Sergeant Henry Nicholas Statue in the Park of Remembrance on Cambridge Terrace.

Today also marks 89 years since the Bridge of Remembrance opened on 11 November 1924.

This week in Christchurch history (11 – 17 November)

12 November 1980
New Christchurch City Council Civic Offices (formerly Millers Department Store) officially open.

13 November 1849
Royal Charter granted for the incorporation of the Canterbury Association.

15 November 1851
White Hart Hotel (possibly the city’s first) in operation.

Proposed design for the White Hart Hotel, High Street, Christchurch  [1902]  Elevation for the proposed hotel, designed by Messrs S. and A. Luttrell, to be built on the site of the existing hotel. However, with the No Licence vote at the 1902 election the trustees were not able to proceed with the building which would have cost £25,000. A less extravagant design was built in 1905, burnt down in 1908, but reinstated by the Luttrells behind the same façade
Proposed design for the White Hart Hotel, High Street, Christchurch
[1902]
Elevation for the proposed hotel, designed by Messrs S. and A. Luttrell, to be built on the site of the existing hotel. However, with the No Licence vote at the 1902 election the trustees were not able to proceed with the building which would have cost £25,000. A less extravagant design was built in 1905, burnt down in 1908, but reinstated by the Luttrells behind the same façade.
17 November 1895
Mark Twain (Samuel L. Clemens) visits. He described Christchurch as a town where half the people rode bicycles and the other half were kept busy dodging them. Read the Lost Christchurch article Mark Twain ‘At Home’ in Christchurch in 1895

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More November events in our Christchurch chronology.