Edward Hagen

Photo collection reference number
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Object Detail

Copy of a full length photograph of a man in military uniform. Solider thought to be Edward [Ted] Hagen. WW1.
Object type
Media/materials description
Glass plate negative.
Media and materials
Half plate.
World war 1914 -1918
Credit line
Edward Hagen. Nelson Provincial Museum, Tyree Studio Collection: 97660


Correction: A second member of the family to erve in New Zealand Armed forces in Europe was Norman Hagen, Edward's cousin and son of his Uncle John Hagen. Norman survived the war and returned home to work as a musterer in the Upper South Island.

- C Moriarty

Posted on 12-10-2018 01:10:26

In Memory of Edward Hagen – who was Killed in action in WW1 – 1918. The only Knapp-Hagen Family member called up in World War 1 was Edward Hagen, son of James and Bertha (nee Ricketts) Hagen, and elder cousin of John Hagen’s children who included Mabel, Jim, Lila, Norman, Vincent, Norah and Linda. Edward was born in 1882, and grew up in Spring Grove. He was the fourth eldest child of James and Bertha Hagen (nee Ricketts), John’s elder brother. He and his brother James were well into country life and the cutting opposite from 1908 reports on a ploughing competition in the area where both James and Edward gain “podium finishes”. At the time of callup in 1916-7, he was 34, and unmarried. Nelson citizens had always been good at farewelling their family members who were off to foreign wars, and several trips were made to the wharves of Nelson harbour to wish God Speed to those who were to leave the district on the first leg of their voyage overseas by way of the coastal ships which called daily to link with overseas shipping at Wellington or Lyttelton. The picture to the right shows the departure of Nelson Troops on the 9th January, 1917. What happened the day Edward died – On the closing day of the month a small patrol led by Sergt. Travis, and including Sergt. Swainson, Pte. Conway and Pte. Ballantyne, left our lines at 7.30 p.m. from near Waterloo Bridge for an enemy post about 300 yards in front. The party worked its way down the shelter of an old communication trench, and when about 25 yards from the post was held up by a stout wire block. Getting out of the trench the raiders crawled to within ten yards of the unsuspecting enemy, and then suddenly swarmed over the post. The two sentries, completely surprised, threw up their hands when ordered, on which an old dug-out close by was investigated and found to contain several of the enemy. They poured out of their shelter and a desperate melee followed. Three were shot dead; others succeeded in escaping, and Sergt. Travis and his party proceeded to make back to our lines with their prisoners. Further numbers of the enemy, now thoroughly aroused, rushed up from the rear and immediately opened fire with bombs and rifles. The party was obliged to make for the shelter of Newgate Avenue, Sergt. Travis deliberately covering its withdrawal. During this development one of the prisoners made his escape; but there was good reason for believing that he was subsequently caught by our Lewis gun fire. The party had now gained the communication trench, but while hurrying along with his reluctant prisoner, a German officer, Sergt. Travis narrowly escaped disaster from the explosion of several bombs attached to a trip-wire. The party finally reached our lines in safety with two prisoners. This dramatic invasion created considerable stir in the enemy sector, and a party of Germans, two of whom were officers with revolvers drawn, were subsequently observed to enter the post in a belated investigation of what was for them a costly episode. At this stage the Regiment had attached for experience several officers from the 74th Division, recently arrived from Palestine. The month closed with considerable artillery activity on our part, in the course of which a great deal of damage was caused to the enemy's defences. Early on the morning of June 1st the S.O.S. signal appeared to the north and south of the Divisional sector, which was then repeated over a wide area. Our own artillery joined in the general response, but no enemy attack developed. On this occasion there was certain short shooting across the front, resulting in several casualties in our lines. During the evening the 1st Battalion of the Regiment relieved the 2nd Battalion of Canterbury in the La Signy Farm sector. At the same time the 2nd Battalion of the Regiment completed its tour of the front line, and moved back to the defences of Colincamps. Casualties during the period had amounted to five killed, one of which was Edward Hagen, and 25 wounded, Above – Inscription on the headstone at St Joseph’s Church Cemetery in Wakefield.

- C Moriarty

Posted on 06-10-2018 01:35:16