Researching military records


For information about medals, visit the New Zealand Defence force medal information page.
More advice and information is available on the Te Mata Law website, including a list of unclaimed medals awarded to 28 Māori Battalion soldiers (PDF).

Personnel files

A personnel file contains personal, career, posting and medical information for an individual soldier.
Personnel files from the First World War are generally available on the Archives New Zealand website.
For personnel files after the First World War, contact the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF). You can find more information on how to request a file on the NZDF website.



NZHistory has many articles on New Zealand at war, including:

Kia Mau

Kia Mau is designed for senior Māori-medium teachers and students. It focuses on two waiata and two haka that have an association with the Māori Battalion. 

Resources include:

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission

An online register of Commonwealth war graves, including those of New Zealand personnel.

War Graves Photographic Project

A large database of images of graves and memorial listings of service casualties since the outbreak of the First World War.

Dictionary of New Zealand Biography Ngā Tāngata Taumata Rau

Biographies of more than 3000 New Zealanders, including many people associated with 28th Māori Battalion:

These biographies are also available in te reo Māori.

New Zealand Electronic Text Collection

A free online archive of New Zealand and Pacific books, journals and manuscripts. It has the Official History of New Zealand in the Second World War, 1939-1945, including a history of 28 Maori Battalion, written by J.F. Cody and originally published in 1956.


A database of records and some photos for more than 115,000 New Zealanders who served in overseas wars, from South Africa in 1899, through the First and Second World Wars to Korea, Malaya and Vietnam in the 1950s to 1970s, and even recent peacekeeping deployments.

National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa

The National Library holds extensive photographic, oral history and other collections relating to the Māori Battalion.

Archives New Zealand Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga

Archives New Zealand holds digitised personal files for soldiers who served in the First World War, among many other records related to the government and people of New Zealand.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

Ngā Taonga holds recordings of broadcast radio programmes, as well as personal sound and visual recordings.

National Army Museum Te Mata Toa

New Zealand’s army memorial museum at Waiōuru is the home of the restored Māori Battalion canteen truck, Te Rau Aroha.

Tairawhiti Museum Te Whare Taonga o te Tairawhiti

Gisborne’s museum and art gallery, which includes an exhibition on the history of C Company, 28th Māori Battalion.

Te Rau Aroha Museum

Located within the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, it tells the stories of Māori participation in the armed forces, including the history of A Company, 28th Māori Battalion.

Nga Tama Toa Facebook group

Nga Taonga a Nga Tamatoa Trust is the guardian of a collection of memorabilia and oral history of C Company.

Gisborne Photo News

An archive of a monthly magazine published between 1954 and 1975 in Gisborne. It includes photographs of many East Coast 28th Māori Battalion soldiers (and their families) after the war.

Courage and Valour: New Zealanders in the Italian Campaign

Audio documentary series about the Italian campaign featuring New Zealand veterans


Film and Television

Maori Battalion – March to Victory (1990)

Produced, directed and written by Tainui Stephens, and narrated by actor George Henare, this television documentary tells the stories of five men who served with the Māori Battalion during the Second World War.

Watch Maori Battalion - March to Victory on NZ On Screen

Ngarimu VC (1993)

This documentary tells the story of Te Moananui a Kiwa Ngārimu VC. It looks at his life and features archival footage and interviews with Battalion comrades and Ngārimu's friends and family in Ruatoria.

Watch Ngarimu VC on NZ On Screen

Ngārimu VC: The Whanau Remembers (2014)

The sisters of Te Moananui a Kiwa Ngārimu remember their big brother from before he left for war.

Watch Ngārimu VC: the whanau remembers on Māori TV

Tama Tū (2004)

An award-winning short film written and directed by Taika Waititi and produced by Whenua Films. Six Māori Battalion soldiers camped in Italian ruins wait for night to fall.

Watch Tama Tū on NZ On Screen

The Years Back (1973)

Follows New Zealand's 6 Infantry Brigade and 28th Māori Battalion as they fight their way through Italy between 1943 and 1945. The documentary traces the advance north after the fall of Cassino, including the bloodless capture of Padua and the Kiwi forces’ stand-off with Marshal Tito’s Yugoslav partisans in Trieste.

Watch The Years Back on NZ On Screen

28th Maori Battalion's 17th Reunion (1988)

Footage from the 28th Māori Battalion’s seventeenth reunion, hosted by Ngāti Kahungunu. Part of an episode of Waka Huia, made by TVNZ.

Watch the 28th Maori Battalion's 17th Reunion on YouTube

Anzac Day Collection

A fantastic collection of some of the best documentaries and dramas about New Zealanders at war.

View the Anzac Day collection on NZ On Screen

‘Māori Battalion inspected by Duke of Gloucester’ (1940)

Short clips of footage of the Duke of Glouster inspecting soldiers from the 28th Māori Battalion in England.

Watch ‘Māori Battalion inspected by Duke of Gloucester 1940’ on the British Pathé website.



J.F. Cody, 28 (Maori) Battalion, War History Branch, Department of Internal Affairs, Wellington, 1956 (read 28 (Maori) Battalion on the NZETC website)

Wira Gardiner, Te Mura o te Ahi: The Story of the Maori Battalion, Reed, Auckland, 1992

Wira Gardiner, Ake Ake Kia Kaha E! Forever Brave! B Company 28 (Maori) Battalion 1939-1945, David Bateman, Auckland, 2019

Ian McGibbon (ed.), The Oxford Companion to New Zealand Military History, Oxford University Press, Auckland, 2000

Apirana Ngata, The Price of Citizenship: Ngarimu, VC, Whitcombe & Tombs, Wellington, 1943.

Christopher Pugsley, Te Hokowhitu a Tu: The Maori Pioneer Battalion in the First World War, Reed, Auckland, 1995.

Monty Soutar, Nga Tama Toa – The Price of Citizenship: C Company 28 (Maori) Battalion 1939-1945, David Bateman, Auckland, 2008

Monty Soutar, Whitiki! Whiti! Whiti! E! Maori and the First World War, David Bateman, Auckland, 2019



Kolokesa Māhina-Tuai, ‘FIA (Forgotten in action): Pacific Islanders in the New Zealand Armed Forces’, pp 139-159 in Mallon, Māhina-Tuai and Salesa (eds), Tangata o le Moana: New Zealand and the People of the Pacific. Te Papa Press, Wellington, 2012

Monty Soutar, 'Māori Commanders of the 28 Māori Battalion', pp. 198-208 in Glyn Harper and Joe Hayward (eds), Born to Lead? Portraits of New Zealand Commanders, Exisle Publishing, Auckland, 2003 (Analysis leadership at battalion level and addresses the question of whether there is a unique Māori command style)

Monty Soutar, ‘The price of citizenship. Maori involvement in the Italian Campaign’, in Stefano Fusi (ed.), To the Gateways of Florence: New Zealand Forces in Tuscany 1944, Oratia Media, Auckland, 2011



Arapeta Awatere, Awatere: A Soldier's Story, edited by Hinemoa Ruataupare Awatere, Huia, Wellington, 2003

Patricia Grace, Ned & Katina: A True Love Story, Penguin, Auckland, 2009 (The story of Māori Battalion soldier Ned Nathan, who met and later married a young Cretan woman, Katina)

Paul Moon, Victoria Cross at Takrouna: The Haane Manahi story. Huia, Wellington, 2010


Other related publications

Andrew Burdan, Victory at Point 209, as told by Kawata Teepa. Huia, Wellington, 2012 [English language version] (a graphic novel)

Andrew Burdan, Ngārimu: Te Tohu Toa. [na Kawata Teepa ngā kōrero mō tēnei o ngā pukapuka]. Huia, Wellington, 2012 [Te reo Māori version]

C.K. Stead, Talking About O'Dwyer, Penguin, Auckland, 1999 (an historical novel based in part on a fictional Pākehā officer serving with the Māori Battalion in Crete)

Patricia Grace, , Penguin, Auckland, 2004 (an historical novel inspired by Grace’s father’s diary outlining his experiences with the Māori Battalion)

Louise Mataia, ‘Odd men from the Pacific: the participation of Pacific Island men in the 28 (Maori) Battalion in the Second World War’, MA thesis, University of Otago, 2007

28th Maori Battalion Association, 28th Maori Battalion (NZ) Association Final Official Luncheon. Booklet, Te Puni Kokiri, Wellington, 2012

28th (Maori) Battalion, Ake, ake, kia kaha e: songs of the New Zealand 28 Māori Battalion, sound recording, National Library of New Zealand, Atoll, 2006