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3/1229 Corporal James Darling Anderson - New Zealand Medical Corps
 
James Darling Anderson was born in Auckland on 19th June 1889 the son of Mary Hamilton and John Herbertson Anderson. John Herbertson Anderson was a ships engineer working for the Union Steamship Company when he was appointed, in
late 1893, as the Chief Engineer of the Porirua Mental Institute.[i]
 
The Anderson family moved from Auckland to Porirua and in 1895 James and his brother John were both enrolled at Porirua School.[ii] 
 
James was working as a farm hand and living on the farm of James Gray, Pauahatanui when he enlisted, at Porirua Mental Hospital, on 3rd August 1915 in the New Zealand Expeditionary Force.[iii] James’ medical forms list that he was 6’ 2”
(1.88 m) tall and 156 lb (70.8k)[iv] and with glasses he meets the eyesight requirements. James had previously been
rejected for ‘eyesight’ possibly in 1914 when physical requirements were far stricter. 
 
The issue of eyesight may have resulted in James entering camp on 3rd August 1915 as 3/1229 Private Anderson, New Zealand Medical Corp (NZMC). Following basic training Private Anderson sailed from New Zealand on the 9th October
1915 with the 7th Reinforcements NZMC for Egypt.
 
On arrival in Egypt in December 1915 Private Anderson was assigned to the No 3 Field Ambulance. With the end of the Dardanelles Campaign the No 3 Field Ambulance as part of the 2nd New Zealand Infantry Brigade transferred to the Western Front. Private Anderson however remained in Egypt with an eye infection and would not re-join the No 3 Field Ambulance until August 1916.[v]
 
Private Anderson remained on the Western Front until 1918 with the No 3 Field Ambulance but also on attachment with
the 1st & 3rd Battalions, 3rd New Zealand Rifles Brigade. During this time he was in the major actions Somme, Messines, Paschendaele either in the front lines or in removing wounded back for treatment.  In the two years spent in France
Private Anderson was given two periods of leave in England. In March 1918 was posted to the 3rd Battalion with the rank of rifleman and was on ‘Water Duties’
he was promoted to Corporal in April 1918.
 
 
 
NZ Field Ambulances on the Western Front
 
 
Corporal Anderson remained with the 3rd Battalion until the Armistice, November 1918, when he was posted back to England on duty. Corporal Anderson was medically assessed and found to be B2 which meant he was fit for service in New Zealand so on 2nd January 1919 he returned to New Zealand on the Matatua. In New Zealand Corporal Anderson was discharged on the 21st March 1919  ‘on termination of period of engagement.’[vi]
 
James Anderson then re-enlisted on the 14th April 1919 in the New Zealand Army Medical Corp. There was a need for trained medical attendants to treat the long term World War One sick and wounded troops. Private Anderson served in Waikato and Rotorua Hospitals prior to his second discharge on the 30th July 1919.
 
Private Anderson was still in uniform on the 22nd July 1919 when
Porirua held Peace Celebrations for returning soldiers as reported
in the Evening Post.[vii]
 
Lieutenants Cobb, Munro and Private Russell were men from
Porirua Mental Hospital. Corporal Katene and Private Mepham
were men from Porirua.
 
James Anderson returned to civilian life and farming. In 1923
his medals were sent to him in Kaitaia, North Auckland where he
was working as a stock inspector.
 
There is no record of James marrying and he died in Wellington
in 1963.
 
Notes:
The historic spelling of Pauahatanui is used in old official documents.
 
References:
Military records 3/1229 Corporal James Darling Anderson; Archway – Archives New Zealand
Papers Past Online
NZ BDM Online
Porirua School Jubilee 1873 - 1923: Pataka Museum
 
Photos:
Test and background: New Zealand Field Ambulances in France - RSA Collection
  
[i]     Encylopedia New Zealand 1906 
[ii]    Porirua school rolls
[iii]   Militqary records
[iv]   Archway Archives New Zealand Military Files: 3/1229 Corporal James Darling Anderson
[v]    Archway Archives New Zealand Military Files: 3/1229 Corporal James Darling Anderson 
[vi]   Archway Archives New Zealand Military Files: 3/1229 Corporal James Darling Anderson
[vii]  Peace Ceremonies, 22nd July 1919, Evening Post 
  
 No 3 New Zealand General Hospital  - Codford, Wiltshire     1917