Cap badge, 12 (Nelson) Regiment : Lance Corporal G A Swanson, Canterbury Infantry Battalion, New Zealand Expeditionary Force

Accession Number REL35030
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Badge
Physical description Brass
Maker Gaunt, J R
Place made United Kingdom: England, Greater London, London
Date made c 1914 - 1917
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

Brass cap badge for 12 (Nelson) Regiment. A circular badge featuring a stag with one leg raised within a voided centre, enclosed by an inner band with the words 'NELSON INFANTRY', flanked by a pair of fern fronds, with the number 12 at the apex. Supplied with a pair of attachment lugs.

History / Summary

Related to the service of Gustave Adolph Swanson, a survey chainsman of Glenroy, New Zealand who was born in Sweden on 10 October 1884. Swanson had previously served with the Swedish Navy before emigrating to New Zealand, and enlisted with the New Zealand Expeditionary Force on 13 April 1915 at Nelson. Issued regimental number 6/2771, he was assigned to C Company, Canterbury Infantry Battalion, and after training, embarked for overseas service, arriving at Mudros (Lemnos) on 30 September 1915. He was appointed temporary Lance Corporal on 18 January 1916 and full Lance Corporal on 4 March. A month later, his battalion left Port Said for France, where he served, mainly on the Somme, until wounded there on 17 September 1916. His medical record states '[w]hile holding a trench against a counter-attack, he was hit by a piece of high explosive' in his right chest, resulting in fractured and broken ribs. After treatment, Swanson was assessed for possible return to active service in early December 1916 but was deemed unfit for further service and returned to New Zealand, where he was discharged on 5 April 1917. At some later point, Swanson moved to Australia.