Title / object name
Copy of a portrait of Donald Jessen
|Maker ||Role ||Date |
|Berry & Co ||photography studio ||1914-1919 |
black and white glass negativeMaterials
photographic gelatin, sheet glass, silver, photographic plates
half plate (1/2)Classification
gelatin dry plate negatives, black-and-white negatives, studio portraits, portraits
Purchased 1998 with New Zealand Lottery Grants Board funds
Donald Jessen, serial number 2/2848
This is a copy of a photograph of Donald Jessen (WWI serial number 2/2848).
Donald Jessen was the younger brother of John Jessen who was also a member of the New Zealand Field Artillery and who was killed in action in France in 1918. Their parents, William August Jessen and Christine Jessen (nee Johansen) lived in Mauriceville when their sons were born but had moved to Wellington by 1908 where they lived at 40 Kent Terrace.
Donald worked as a warehouseman in Wellington and served in the D Battery volunteer force until 1915 when he joined the New Zealand Field Artillery as part of the 10th reinforcements. He went into Trentham Camp on the 16th November 1915 and embarked on the Willochra or Tofua to Egypt on 4th March 1916. His unit on embarkation was the No. 5 Field Battery (2nd Field Artillery Brigade).
Although he survived the war, Donald contracted a bout of influenza in 1919 which became pneumonia, and he died at Endell Street Military Hospital in London on the 23rd February 1919. He is buried at Brookwood Military Cemetery, grave reference II.J.4.
His parents and sisters placed many memorial notices in the evening post to commemorate his death. William and Christine Jessen returned to live in Mauriceville in 1921.
Donald's service number was 2/2848.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.
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 email@example.com 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.