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Object: Portrait of Private Claude Carey Ballinger

This image is No known copyright restriction.

Title Portrait of Private Claude Carey Ballinger
Production Berry & Co (photography studio), 1917, Wellington
Medium summary black and white glass negative
Materials photographic gelatin, sheet glass, silver, photographic plates
Classification studio portraits, portraits, black-and-white negatives, gelatin dry plate negatives
Technique black-and-white photography
Format half plate (1/2)
Credit line Purchased 1998 with New Zealand Lottery Grants Board funds
Registration number B.044397

Claude Carey Ballinger, service number 50982

This studio portrait shows Private Claude Carey Ballinger.

Ballinger was working as a storeman at the Wellington warehouse of Ballinger Brothers,  'Manufacturers and Suppliers of Plumbers' Requisites' when he enlisted on 21 February 1917.  He married Ivy Hilda Standen on 2 May 1917 and  sailed from Wellington on 9 June 1917  with the 26th Reinforcements.

He arrived at Sling Camp in England on 16 August, and was posted for training to the 4th Reserve Battalion (2nd Wellington Company) of the  Auckland- Wellington Regiment.  However he had not disclosed at his initial medical examination that he had 'since the age of seven been troubled by giddiness and pains in [the] cardiac area' and that he had had to give up outdoor work.  He was ordered out of a route march in October, and given light duty for 9 weeks. He was sent to Codford Hospital  and stayed for 4 months but no improvement was observed.   On 30 November a Medical Board sent him back for 'graduated training;' but another Board on 15 February 1918 noted that he appeared 'debilitated and anaemic.'   Yet another Medical Board, on 25 June 1918  diagnosed  him with DAH  (Diffuse Alveolar Hemorrhage), a heart disorder. The Board noted  Claude's  'shortness of breath on exertion', and that his progress was 'stationary'.  The Board assessed Claude as permanently unfit for military service, and fit only for 'light duties' in civilian life. The Board recommended that he be discharged from the NZEF, and that he not be considered eligible for a pension on the grounds that he had 'suppressed his illness before board & in Camp in N.Z.'

Claude was sent back to New Zealand and was discharged from military service on 16 July 1918.  Despite his heart condition, he was to live a long life, until his death at the age of 75.


I know who this is

The Berry Boys
During World War I, around 120 Kiwi soldiers had their photograph taken at Wellington’s Berry & Co photography studio before they left New Zealand to fight in the war . These portraits are now in Te Papa’s collection.

In the lead-up to the World War I centenary (2014-18), Te Papa is working to identify these soldiers and the loved ones they are pictured with. We want to make contact with their descendants, and to record their stories.

Some soldiers have already been identified. For others, we only have the surname etched on the glass negative.

Contact us
If you have any information you can share about the Berry Boys - either a soldier or someone they are photographed with - please use the online form above. You can also email or leave a phone message for us on 04 381 7129. You can also write to Berry Boys Project Team, Te Papa, PO Box 467, Wellington 6140.

To aid identification, please be sure to include the Te Papa registration number (B.044366, for example) for the photo in question.

Related information

Disclaimer: This information was created from historic documentation, and may not necessarily reflect the best available knowledge about the item. Some collection images are created for identification purposes only and may not be of reproduction quality. Some images are not available due to copyright restrictions. If you have information or questions about objects in the collection, contact us using our enquiry form. You can also find out more about Collections Online.