Some feedback from NZ research

Discussion in 'SOE & OSS' started by rrlutz, May 25, 2017.

  1. rrlutz

    rrlutz Member

    Spoke with curator of New Zealand Naval Museum. They have few if any holdings on NZ involvement with (SOE/SRD) despite being aware of the Naval Directorate of both organizations. They have scant info on the RN use of X midget subs. He (they) recommended contacting the Army Museum for more info or the UK RN as most records on NZ naval officers serving with SOE/SRD would have remained with the RN when the RNZN "broke off" years later. Short version: No joy

    Spoke with researchers and did quick look at the New Zealand National Library. Most of their "hard copy books and the like" are readily available on line or for purchase. What they do have however are the holdings of Ian McGibbon (the former historian). These are the ORIGINAL manuscripts and notes of Wigzell and others including the interesting Japanese War Trials in which SRD members could not testify). You need prior permission to view these original documents so call or mail ahead. A tip: if you start with computerized search, the terms SOE and SRD turn up little. Go with Z Force and the AIB for good hits from which to begin.

    The National Army Museum in Waiouru was delightful. Plenty of NZ SAS data from WW2 onwards. Imagine walking into the research area and sitting in front of you is a Welbike looking like it was right out of the crate. Anyways, they have info on NZ folks and activities vis a vis the SOA and SRD. Contact Dolores J.N. Ho the archivist at PO box 45, Waiouru 4861 New zealand. phone 6463876911 ext. 217.

    The Auckland War Memorial Museum also a great place. The military portion of the museum is tied electronically to many of the other NZ libraries. It has copies of the Ian McGibbon files that you can view without prior permission. Keep in mind, while legible they are copies so if you want "real" photos and the like...not here.
    The staff can pull up service records real time on Kiwis who served in WW2 for you. You should start your efforts by first going to (collections online) and (Auckland online cenotaph) to view what you can without their help. I found some really interesting (at least to me) unpublished notes assembled by Sgt Wigzell of the SRD. As many know, Wigzell served in the SRD in SEMUT and after the war, led the charge for recognition of Kiwis who served in the SRD. He assembled a lot of interviews and data which did not appear in his books. It is here.

    The staff at the Auckland War Memorial Museum is responsive and are willing to transmit copies of records you identify to you electronically or via snail mail for reasonable fees.
    (Those I did not simply take pictures of that I shall be gettings at some point include the training schedule for SRD recruits and some materials on the post war War Trials in which SRD operatives were prohibited from testifying. I digress.

    The contact information for the staff at the Memorial Museum is: The phone is 64 9 309 0443 ext 7074 snail mail: Auckland War Memorial Museum Auckland Domain, New Zealand Private Bag 92018, Victoria St. West, Auckland 1142 New Zealand

    In closing: A book I had not seen previously by Bob Long entitles Operation Semut I with publication date 1989 by the Australian Print Group, Maryborough, Victoria Australia ISBN 0908021100 has made my reading list if I can find a copy for sale on line at a reasonable price. Looks engaging.

    As I plow thru my photos of records and the like, I shall post some info if anyone has an interest.

    Regards and good hunting
    von Poop, DaveB, Enigma1003 and 2 others like this.
  2. DaveB

    DaveB Very Senior Member

    I was about to say that a copy is currently on ebay in Australia for AU$30 - but then I checked delivery costs to the UK - AU$48

    That cannot be correct.
  3. Chris C

    Chris C Canadian Patron

    eBay is not your only option! There are 16 copies listed on abebooks. Possibly the base prices are higher, but delivery costs lower. (The first one, for shipping to Canada, costs $41 for the book and $14.84 for postage.)

    (Prices I quoted are what abebooks presented in Canadian $, but currently the two dollars are almost at par)
    rrlutz likes this.

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