Timeline: New Zealand’s WWI experience

There was much more to New Zealand's World War I experience than the pointless slaughter at Gallipoli in 1915.

While the eight-month Gallipoli campaign was New Zealand's main focus early in the war, most of the nation's attention and effort went into the so-called Western Front in northern France and Belgium between 1916 - 18.

It was here New Zealand soldiers faced their greatest trials during the war as they endured heavy casualties in the huge set-piece battles of the Somme, Messines, Broodseinde and Passchendaele. 

Thirty percent of New Zealand soldiers on the Western Front weren't volunteers but conscripted soldiers, forcibly sent by the coalition government to fight.

In 1918 the New Zealand Division, a small army of 15,000 men, was one of the strongest and well reinforced Divisions in the entire British army.

The Division was engaged in brutal fighting on an almost a daily basis against the opposing German forces in 1918.

The New Zealanders played a key role in beating back Germany's last major offensive of the war in March, before breaking the infamous Hindenburg defensive line and attacking almost non-stop during the so-called '100 Days Offensive' until the war's end.

Scroll down to learn more about the key dates in New Zealand's World War One experience.

WWI timeline for Kiwis - 1914
WWI timeline for Kiwis - 1915
WWI timeline for Kiwis - 1916
WWI timeline for Kiwis - 1917
WWI timeline for Kiwis - 1918
WWI timeline for Kiwis - 1919


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