Official History of New Zealand's Effort in the Great War

The Official History of New Zealand's Effort in the Great War is a four-volume'Popular History' series which covered the New Zealand involvement in the First World War. Aimed at presenting the efforts of the New Zealand Military Forces during the war to the general public, the series was published during the period 1919 to 1923; as early as 1915, it was recognised by the New Zealand Government that an official history would be produced to document the contributions of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force to the First World War. The official war correspondent, Malcolm Ross, was tasked with collecting the historical material that would be required. Ross, a trained journalist who had reported on the seizure of Samoa earlier in the war, had been on Gallipoli alongside Charles Bean, the Australian official war correspondent, would observe the New Zealand Division during the fighting on the Western Front. After the war, when serious consideration was being given to the production of the official history, Lieutenant General Alexander Godley, the commander of the NZEF, believed that Ross would be the best person to produce the history.

However, Major General Alfred Robin, the commandant of the New Zealand Military Forces, held firm views of what should be communicated by an official history. He dictated an educational approach, considering the target audience to be students of military history. Journalistic and writing skills were second to the ability to understand and communicate military tactics and strategy, the lessons of which were to be imparted at the direction of the Imperial General Staff at the War Office. Hence, rather than Ross, Lieutenant Colonel Hugh Stewart, who had commanded a battalion in the New Zealand Division during the war, was favoured by Robin to write the official history, it was recognised that an accessible'Popular History', aimed at a more general readership would be appropriate alongside the official history. Endorsed by the Minister of Defence James Allen, the Government approved the writing of this'Popular History'; the Government's decision to produce a'Popular History' was formally announced in June 1918.

In response to a request by the New Zealand Military Forces' Base Records in Wellington for historical records, Major Fred Waite, who had served in the war with the NZEF, had produced a summary of the New Zealand involvement in the Gallipoli Campaign and Allen selected him to oversee the production of the'Popular History' series. Envisaged as one volume, four were written, one each for the campaigns in Gallipoli, the Western Front and the Middle East, with a fourth volume on the smaller campaigns, contributions of the New Zealand Naval Forces and organisational aspects of the NZEF; as well as co-ordinating the publication of the four volumes of the'Popular History', Waite wrote the first volume, an account of the NZEF campaign in Gallipoli, Waite having served there with the New Zealand Engineers. He commenced writing in late 1918 and his book was published in 1919, it included a preface by Allen which introduced the'Popular History' series as an alternative to the official history and retailed for six shillings.

Stewart, considered to write the official history, was selected to write the history of the New Zealand Division, which served on the Western Front. Although reluctant to accept his commission, he began work in January 1919 and by that August had completed his first draft, his work, designated as the second volume of the'Popular History', was published in 1922. At the time of its release, it was favourably reviewed in the Christchurch newspaper, The Press in respect to Waite's work. A draft manuscript detailing the NZEF operations in the Middle East had been prepared by Major A. H. Wilkie, who had served with the Wellington Mounted Rifles in the Sinai and Palestine Campaigns but the draft was deemed unacceptable and Colonel Guy Powles revised it into a more accessible form; this was published in 1922. Lieutenant H. T. B. Drew was the editor of the fourth volume, which covered the smaller campaigns in which New Zealand personnel were involved. There were chapters on the seizure of Samoa, the work of the New Zealand Naval Forces' HMS Philomel and the brief Senussi Campaign.

There were chapters on the New Zealand Dental Corps, Veterinary Corps, the work of New Zealand medical services, bases and soldier education. The New Zealanders at Gallipoli – Major Fred Waite The New Zealand Division 1916 – 1919: A Popular History Based on Official Records – Col. H. Stewart The New Zealanders in Sinai and Palestine – Lieut.-Colonel. C. Guy Powles War Effort of New Zealand: A Popular History of Minor Campaigns in which New Zealanders took part. H. T. B. Drew The volumes were published by Tombs. Despite being a'Popular History', each volume was subtitled as the "Official History of New Zealand's Effort in the Great War"; as the intended official history was not written, the'Popular History' series remained the main source of information on the New Zealand contribution to the First World War for several years. Stewart's work, despite text, described as "inaccessible and turgid" by recent historians, was for 75 years the main reference for the exploits of the New Zealand Division in the First World War as was Powles' work on the fighting in Sinai and Palestine.

As early as the 1940s, when thoughts were turning to the official history of New Zealand's military in the Second World War, it was recognised that the'Popular History' was an inadequate account of and tribute to the men who had served in the First World War. An error in the first volume of the series led to a long-running under-estimate of the number of New Zealanders who fought i

Hopkins L. Turney

Hopkins Lacy Turney was a Democratic U. S. Representative and United States Senator from Tennessee. Turney was born in the Smith County settlement of Tennessee; as a youth, he was apprenticed to a tailor. He served in the Seminole War in 1818. Subsequent to this he studied law, passed the bar examination and began a practice in Jasper, Tennessee, he moved to Winchester, continuing the practice of law. He was first elected to the Tennessee House of Representatives in 1828, he married Teresa Francis, the daughter of Miller Francis and Hannah Henry, in 1826. She was born December 9, 1809 and died September 5, 1879. Hopkins and Teresa were the parents of nine children, their son Peter Turney was Chief Justice of the Tennessee Supreme Court from 1870 to 1893. S. state of Tennessee from 1893 to 1897. He was elected to the U. S. House, serving three terms in that body from 1837 to 1843, the 25th through 27th Congresses. Subsequent to this he was elected by the Tennessee General Assembly to the U. S. Senate, returning to Washington, DC after a two-year hiatus and serving one six-year term in that body, where he was chairman of the U.

S. Senate Committee on Retrenchment for four years and the U. S. Senate Committee on Patents and the Patent Office for two before returning to his law practice, which he engaged in until shortly before his death, he is buried in Winchester. United States Congress. "Hopkins L. Turney". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Hopkins L. Turney at Find a Grave