Timaru at the front - 6/291 Cecil Malthus
Private with 12th (Nelson) Company in the Canterbury Infantry Battalion.

The Kid from Timaru

Cecil Malthus' book was published in 1965, Anzac: A Retrospect, providing an honest and compelling account. The book was republished in 2002 along with a companion volume, "Armentières and the Somme", 147 pages. A quote: "We just struggled on through the mud and the muddle, the bloodshed and destruction, with no more than a grim hope of survival and an ever more bitter dissolution.". Incidentally, a typo in the forewords to the 2002 editions also incorrectly recorded his death, as being in 1970. 1976 it was. Taught French at TBHS. He was at Gallipoli. Evacuated twice on account of illness: influenza, hepatitis, scarletina (tonsillitis with a rash), PUO (pyrexia of unknown origin), evacuated to Lemnos (60 miles away), a treeless island, the hospital was two big tents put up by the Australians - there they got sleep, water, descent food, rest and were dry. Bad cases of dysentery were evacuated to Cairo, a journey of 961 miles. Dysentery was unpleasant - the vector was the flies. They got dehydrated. As soon as the temperature fell the flies disappeared and there were no further cases of dysentery. During winter some suffered from frost bite. Malthus was on the Western Front so found his French handy. His papers. Excerpts. Te Papa. Pen Portrait.

Cecil was in the same company as William A. Ham “the first upon the roll of honour of the New Zealanders to die in action for their King and country in upholding justice and right.” But 710 Private Wilf Knight landed with the first Australian forces, hours before the New Zealand contingent was the first Kiwi wounded at Gallipoli. He died of his wounds and was buried at sea between 27/04/1915 and 29/04/1915. He was with the First Australian Infantry Battalion.

Cecil Malthus b. in Timaru 24 April 1890, ex TBHS. Died in 1976. He was a cadet in the Timaru Territorials. Cecil studied English and French at Canterbury College, Christchurch, which was then a regional campus of the University of New Zealand. He attained a Bachelor of Arts degree and then completed a Master of Arts degree, graduating with first class honours in 1913. He spent three years in service in the 1st Canterbury Battalion from 1914 with some inevitable bouts of sickness. Wounded from by a bomb at Somme on 28 Sept. 1916 and admitted to Brockenhurst. 2nd and 3rd toes removed on his right foot on account of gangrene on 26 Sept. 1916. He wrote letters to his future wife Jessie Hazel Annandale Watters. Hazel, also attended Canterbury College, studying Latin and English. He and Hazel were married in 1919.
Serial No.6/291
Next of Kin: H.P. Malthus (father), Timaru
Enlistment Address: Teacher at Boys' College, Nelson, NZ
when he enlisted 15 August 1914.
Military District Canterbury
Body on Embarkation: Main Body
Embarkation Unit: Canterbury Infantry Battalion
Embarkation Date 16 October 1914
Place of Embarkation: Wellington, NZ
Transport: HMNZT 4
  


Cecil Malthus, hair black, eyes brown, 5'8" aged 24. The stag badge. 12th Nelson Company 

An unvarnished story.

Major (later Lt. Colonel) Cyprian Bridge Brereton, an Old boy from Nelson College knew Malthus. Captain C.B. Brereton, battalion commander of the 12th (Nelson) Company, whose memoir Tales of Three Campaigns, published in 1926 by Selwyn & Blount Ltd, London (through Whitcombe and Tombs)- 290 pages gives a lively account of the voyage to Egypt and Battle of the Suez Canal. This book is critical, personal and breezy. The three campaigns are the brief engagement on the banks of Suez Canal, Gallipoli, and France. Book relaunched April 2015. Captain Brereton took 193 volunteer soldiers to Christchurch on 16 August 1914, as the 12th (Nelson) Company merged into the Canterbury Infantry Battalion NZEF. At the Battle of the Suez Canal, Major Brereton commanded the only New Zealand element involved in that short, but important engagement. At the Battle of Krithia on Gallipoli, Brereton suffered a serious head wound. He recovered sufficiently to resume his company command in France, and lead them in the Battle of the Somme. As the company commander his book dedicated to the n.c.o.'s and men of the Nelson Regiment, Major Brereton deals in simple and sometimes plain "digger" language with events as they were experienced by the men of his unit. The book is compiled from a diary kept and often written under fire. The book describes the voyage of the Main Body to Egypt, the Suez Canal fight, the occupation and taking of the three northern outposts of Anzac, and the events leading up to the New Zealand Brigade attack on Krithia. The "digger" type, by contrast with the 'Tommy," is well portrayed, and the viewpoint, of the cursing but fearless, reckless, and unselfish infantryman also well presented.  He was with men who did actual fighting, who know they had to do. it, and learned how to do it, often unconventionally but invariably with their faces to the foe. They resented authority and discipline, to begin with, and indeed throughout the campaigns. But they stood hardship and answered, to any call for service gallantly. The Major draws no morals, but he makes one point as a farseeing citizen. "Some day the Empire will again be at war, and the Dominions will send their men to fight. New Zealand men require one condition to become first-class troops. This condition is training—a reasonable training in peace time. No one can count on there being sufficient time after war begins."  His accounts of the fighting are vivid, and all the more valuable because he does not mind expressing his opinions. Of General Godley, the author says that he "neither sought popularity nor became popular with the colonial soldier," but that "it cannot be denied New Zealand owed the General much of its military efficiency." There are clearly cut pictures of the fighting on the Canal, and especially of entrenched New Zealanders hailing passing British warships under fire. "In fiction the hero hardly knows he is wounded," says the Major, "but the reverse is true in real life, and one of the greatest surprises a man gets is the tremendous blow of the bullet. Through the shoulder it spins him round, as men often expressed it, 'like a smack with the back of an axe.' It is very unusual for wounded men to complain of pain. When a man receives an injury, which kills him nearly instantly, he very usually says, 'I'm hit,' in a dazed way, as if that were all he realised." He himself was badly wounded in the head, returned to New Zealand, and was soon back in the firing line. Incidentally, he says, "we were very displeased with our reception in Auckland, possibly contrasting it with our welcome in London," and he describes how a stout sergeant-major on the wharf tried to drill a set of cripples in the usual way. There are interesting descriptions of the fighting in France, and the book ends with a lively account of the homeward journey in 1918, on a ship that included over a hundred English war brides. Their sympathy, we are told, was with offenders. "Quite often a soldier could be seen doing packdrill with his infant in his arms, a pathetic instance of paternal martyrdom, while his wife looked on, contentedly convinced that her warrior was a victim of martial oppression."  

From   

Timaru Herald, 6 March 1909, Page 6
Yesterday, the boys of the Timaru High School assembled to bid good-bye to Cecil Malthus, who is leaving the school to attend Canterbury College. The headmaster referred to the assistance Malthus had rendered to the school by his constant application to work, his keen enthusiasm in sport, and by his good, character and conduct. After three hearty cheers had been given, Malthus replied, wishing the school every success in scholarship and sport. Malthus entered the school in 1903 on a junior scholarship, and, later won a senior scholarship, in each case being well up on the list. His school career has been a long succession of prize winnings, and twice in succession he has won the Cain bequest prize essay. Now he has wound up his school career by winning a senior national scholarship. Timaru should be proud of a High School that produces lads of such a stamp. A number of senior boys assembled at the express to bid a last farewell.

Colonist, 3 October 1913, Page 6 THE RHODES SCHOLARSHIP.
CANTERBURY NOMINEE. Christchurch, Oct. 2. Mr Cecil Malthus, M.A., has been selected as the Canterbury nominee for the Rhodes Scholarship. Mr. Malthus had a brilliant scholastic career, and is a well-known long-distance runner.

Timaru Herald, 30 January 1914, Page 7
Mr Cecil Malthus, M.A., who has been spending a few days in Timaru with relatives, leaves by the first express to-day for Christchurch, on his way to Nelson College, where he is to take up a position on the teaching staff.

Timaru Herald, 16 January 1915, Page 6 A LETTER FROM EGYPT
BY A TIMARU BOY. COLOMBO AND ADEN DESCRIBED.
Mrs Malthus, of Timaru, has just received from her son, Private Cecil Malthus, two letters from which we have been permitted to make some extracts. "Writing under date Nov. 23, Private Malthus says: "It was a great disappointment not to get a mail at Colombo. We are just nearing Aden, and should get there to-morrow. We have had a wonderfully good trip; a rowing boat could have come all the way from Albany. The unchanging calm of the sea, the blue sky, and the endless sunshine day after day, are producing an effect of weary monotony which, I think, is oppressing to every soul on board. One feels that a tropical downpour would be a welcome change and a wild storm an unmixed blessing. However, there is not much chance of either now, and after all, the worst is over. No doubt the Red Sea will be very warm, but it is now mid-winter, so we should be spared by the mosquitoes. Then the Mediterranean will be delightful.
    Colombo, which we reached on Sunday morning, is situated on a large plain. We passed through the fishing fleet some miles out at sea —40 or 50 native catamarans, most of them running under sail. They are not really boats, though the main part is fashioned roughly in the shape of a boat. It rises fairly high out of the water, but is very narrow, and hardly hollowed out at all. The occupants simply perch on top of it—a very precarious position one would think. The boat is kept from capsizing by its outriggers light, log running parallel to it, and held in position by stays. The boats have a picturesque appearance skimming along at a great rate with brown and black sails. The harbour is an artificial one built of huge concrete blocks, and several times larger than the inner harbour at Lyttelton. It was teeming with shipping, and presented an animated scene, but it was the shore that attracted our attention. There were the domes, towers and temples, and slums, the bright red tiles and cliffs, the dark clustering palms, and the tender green of banana gardens—the splendour and the squalor of the East. The colouring was wonderful —vivid, dazzling, yet infallibly artistic. There are no wharves at Colombo. All the trade is done by means of barges and tugs, and plenty of cheap labour. We anchored some distance from the shore. A few native boats were soon alongside, but we found to our surprise, that no traffic in fruit is permitted in the harbour. The natives are such a lot of thieves and swindlers that it has all been stopped. This was very disappointing, but we were quickly consoled by the promise of a run ashore in the afternoon. We had only the ship's boats to get ashore in, so only two relays were sent, and the remainder were promised a turn next day. I decided to go ashore, and be sure of it —to-morrow is very uncertain nowadays. Each boat was under an officer, some of whom left their men to their own devices, but our officer insisted on our marching in ranks. We passed up one English street containing some fine public buildings and hotels, and then plunged into the native quarter emerging at the forts at the base of the breakwater, where the boats picked us up again. It was just a brief glimpse into Wonderland. The chief impression I have is of teeming life, animation and colour; but especially it was a feast of colour. The very streets are a brilliant brick-red the buildings are of beautifully-tinted sandstone, red and brown, and white, splashed and toned and transformed by the work of nature; and the hand of man has been hardly less artistic. The natives may be degraded and contemptible, but they have a fine instinct for colour. We were simply pestered with beggars—old blind men, and gaunt and cunning young ones, little naked children weeping and moaning, but scattering, with the adroitness of habit, before the policeman's whip. We passed a Buddhist temple, covered all over with wonderful, grotesque carving, and through a section of the market place—a scone that baffles description. We had to buy all sorts of things as we marched along. If a native asked 10s for a thing, you proffered sixpence, and generally got it. We saw some beautiful vistas up the side streets, but it was not till the end of our walk that we saw much vegetation, mostly palms, no sign of any flowers. I can only wonder how the place would appear in summer: it was so dazzling even now. All the time we were at Colombo the boat was swarming with gorgeous butterflies of all kinds and colours. About eight or nine of the fleet have come on ahead of the rest —I suppose to take in water first, and so save time. Our scout lectures, which began again on Friday, fill in the time very well, and are mostly interesting. At the rate we are going we ought to cover all the theoretical work by the end of the voyage, and be ready for solid practical work. I will have to learn to ride a horse and motor bicycle, or it will count against my chance of being chosen. The time is passing pleasantly enough except for the sameness. No doubt the time will come when we will look back with longing to the restful life on board."
    Writing under date November 9th, Private Malthus says: "We will not reach Port Said for about three days. I have undertaken to teach French or German, or both, to our company officers. It may take a good deal of time and trouble with no book to work with. The Red Sea has kept well up to its reputation for sweltering heat. The last few days have been more trying than the tropics — a more oppressive heat. But to-day has been a perfect treat, dull with a strong, cool, delicious breeze, making quite a stir on the water. The effect of the change was rather unexpected, though perfectly natural. Instead of feeling revived and animated, we seemed to collapse at the removal of the strain on our nerves, and I think nearly the whole ship has been sleeping all the afternoon. We slowed down as we neared Aden, and took a day longer than we expected to complete the run—eight days from Colombo. The place seemed very similar to Albany, except that the harbour or bay is larger. We remained at anchor about five miles out from the town, and had no shore, leave whatever. They say we are not likely to get any more leave before reaching England, it was the more disappointing, as the town had a very strange and interesting appearance from the distance, and the few Arabs and Negroes who came out in boats, were very picturesque fellows. One could imagine the town as a queer mixture of East and West. The land is very flat, and runs back to lofty mountains and tablelands in the far distance, but just on either side of the entrance, are high jagged rocks or hills. The sand of the desert lay piled high against these rocks, but there were patches of green scrub out in the plain. The town is situated on the edge of the plain, and straggles up round one of the rocky heights to the barracks and forts. This part closely resembles pictures we have seen of the rock of Gibraltar. The forts are splendidly placed, overlooking a wide stretch of sea. Not being able to get ashore our interest centred in the shipping, and there was even more than we saw in Colombo. Amongst the ships in port were half a dozen troopships bound for India with recruits. We were permitted to lower the boats and cruise round the latter, and I had two very enjoyable trips. We exchanged war-cries, news and good wishes with the English troops. They told us 60,000 Indian troops passed them at Suez on the way to Marseilles, and a similar force was expected at Aden next day. The recruits on the troopships were young and palefaced, and seemed mostly from the cities, but had already quite a soldierly bearing. "We saw the 'Minerva,' the cruiser which smashed the Turkish forts at Akaba three weeks previously, and cheered the, Sydney, of Eniden fame, as she went dashing by. I saw a chart of the fight between the latter two vessels, showing the course they steered, and the exact position from which every shot was fired. Unfortunately it was quite impossible to obtain a copy of it. We stayed exactly twenty-four hours at Aden, and left on Thursday morning. Steaming along the Arabian coast was quite uninteresting. In the afternoon we passed quite close by the little village and island fortress of Perym, commanding the entrance to the Red Sea. The Turkish fortress of Hell's Gate, which rumour says we have captured, lies somewhere near this island, but off the course we took. There was a gorgeous sunset that night, over the mountains of Somaliland. Since then we have been completely out of sight of land, and monotony reigns supreme."
    Sunday, Dec. 6. "The unexpected has happened, and we are quartered in Egypt, between the suburbs of Zeitoun and Heliopolis.  We have been kept busy this morning, and this afternoon we have leave, which is too good to miss."

Timaru Herald, 10 February 1915, Page 4 NEWS FROM EGYPT.
A DESCRIPTIVE LETTER, BY CORPORAL C. MALTHUS, M.A.
Mrs H. P. Malthus, of Timaru, has just received some further interesting letters from her son, Corporal Cecil Malthus, M.A. (a former pupil of the Timaru High School), who is in Egypt with the Expeditionary Force. We have been permitted to make some extracts from the letters. In the first one, dated. Dec. 12, the writer says, inter alia:
     "I need hardly say that we were horribly disappointed when we found our destination was Egypt. Right up to Suez we were quite positive that we were going to Europe. Still this place has its compensations, and provided we are not kept too long, we are too well off to complain. The climate is so good, and the country and the people so extremely interesting. I dare say most of the troops will he horribly tired of the place as soon as the novelty wears off, but I think I will always find plenty of interest in learning Arabic, practising French, and studying the people in general. I will resume my account of the trip from Suez, though the details are already rather dim in my mind, not so much from the lapse of time as from the host of novelties and wonders I have seen since. We reached Suez on Wednesday morning, Dec. 2nd, about daybreak. I was sleeping in a coil of rope on deck, I remember, and was routed out by the boatswain, as it was a mooring rope. The African coast is very close, but on the Sinai side the shore can hardly be distinguished. We lay some miles from the town till after dinner, and the natives came swarming out with boat-loads of fruit, etc. Terrible swindlers they were, as we found when we knew the local prices better. The business part of the town contains some tall buildings, and I was surprised at its extent. It is divided from the residential quarter by a lagoon or swamp, and the entrance to the canal is through this European quarter, which contains some fine hotels and private houses. On entering the canal, we found there was a beautiful avenue running along it full of gardens, trees, and picturesque architecture, all with the same profusion of bright colours that we noticed at Colombo. The trip through the canal occupies about fifteen hours, so we passed through most of it in darkness. In any case it appeared to be uninteresting. The canal is very narrow, except at one part where it opens out into a big salt lake, about twelve miles long. The land is absolute desert, and the only natives we saw appeared to be employed on the canal. There was a line of small encampments of Indian troops right along—splendidly built, fierce looking fellows. In the early hours next morning a most unearthly din began to trouble my dreams and I gradually awoke to the fact that we were at anchor at Port Said, and that the boat was thronged with shrieking, yelling natives, carrying up coal in baskets from the barges. They were working in gangs of hundreds, and seemed to be practically starving. They prowled round and snatched greedily at any food they could get— even the pigwash from our breakfast tables. The harbour at Port Said is an artificial one; dug out like the canal, and entered from the sea by a continuation of the canal. It is surrounded by stores and warehouses, which cut off the view of the town. We saw some good buildings on leaving the harbour in the afternoon. The statue of the engineer De Lesseps, right out on the sea-wall, is a particularly good one. We reached Alexandria about nine next morning, and our company disembarked an hour later. The whole disembarkation occupied about a week, and the companies which remained at Alexandria had a good look round there, but we saw practically nothing of the town. I only know that the harbour is a splendid one built out with break- waters, and the shipping is tremendous, on a larger scale, I should think, than Sydney. We remained waiting round the wharf all day, expecting to leave any minute; then we got on the train, went about two hundred yards, and stopped again for hours. After a very tedious day, we had an awful night journey, in filthy third-class carriages. Sleep was impossible, and the night seemed interminable. We could see that the country up the Delta was very thickly populated, carefully irrigated, and closely cultivated, and we envied those who made the journey in day-light. We finally reached the station of Palaio Koubheh, opposite the Khedive's palace of that, name, at four o'clock in the morning, and marched out to our camping place at Zeitoun. We waited an hour for the dawn, and then set to work to pitch camp. Our regiment, had a full complement of tents, but some of the others are still bivouacing. The Friday and Saturday were fully occupied with fatigue work, and pratically no rations were available. It was a real taste of active service conditions. However, we got to town each evening, weary as we were, to buy a meal, and see the night side of Cairo. By Sunday we were fairly ship-shape, and have had no cause to complain of the "tucker" since. We have a regular programme now. At 5.30, while it is still black night, reveille sounds, and the four brass bands march round the camp, making most unwelcome music. At 6.30 there is physical drill, and at 7, breakfast— porridge, "bully beef," and coffee. From 8 to 2 we get through the solid part of the day's work. Our regiment usually marches out about five miles into the desert, and practises attack, entrenchment work, etc. The last three days our scouts have been working independently, locating various villages by means of map and compass, and writing reconnaissance reports on them. This is much more interesting than the ordinary routine work, as we have more chance of observing things, and we get about the country more instead of sticking to the desert. At two o'clock we get back to dinner, very tired and hungry, and got some excellent '"gippo"—stew made of meat, cabbage, turnips and new potatoes all mixed together. There is a short parade for rifle drill, etc. from 3.30 to 4, just for the purpose of keeping us in camp, and then we are free till roll call at 9.30. If we are feeling energetic, we go to Cairo; if not, we just go visiting to the English camp, or spend a pleasant quiet evening at one of the restaurants in Heliopolis. This is a large suburb on the edge of the desert, built entirely during the last three years by a Belgian syndicate. All the houses are very large, many of them larger than any hotel in New Zealand, so I suppose they are divided into flats and apartments. They are without exception handsome in design, but not solidly built. The dry climate makes that unnecessary, as the cheapest building will keep its fresh appearance practically for centuries. For the same reason they can go in for delicate tracery, stucco work, and bright colours, which in New Zealand would soon become effaced and shabby. There is a pleasure garden there called Luna Park, containing a "wonderland" of side shows, skating rink, water chute, etc., but I have not been there yet. The restaurants are delightful and I can't understand why there are none in New Zealand. You can sit indoors or out, among the trees and can get a light, meal and very good beer and wine, all cheap. There is always a piano which the soldiers take charge of and at places there are pictures shown in the open air. Our leave is really too short to see much of Cairo. We can only gather by tea-time, and walk round in the evening, catching the 9 o'clock train for home. The Helmieh station is only eight minutes from camp, so we find the train quicker than the Heliopolis tram, though both are excellent services. In spite of the vast extent of the city, there seem to be very few decent European streets in the business quarter. Of course there may be others, but it is very hard to find the way anywhere, and we generally seem to wander round in a circle, not covering any fresh ground since the first night. Any likely looking road seems to merge into dirty native slums, and back we go again. The native quarters were at first the chief centre of attraction. They certainly opened my eyes to the limits of degradation which men and women can descend to but I hope never to see them again.  I prefer to go to a music hall, though most of them are very poor affairs, only redeemed by the sociable atmosphere and the easy friendliness which prevails among all the different regiments. The Australians are fine fellows, but rather too swaggering, and I find the quaint, shrewd, simple-hearted Lancashire men more interesting company. We hope to get away to-morrow (Sunday) about two o'clock, and perhaps pay a visit to the Pyramids of Ghizeh, where the Australians are encamped. They are fifteen miles from town, but the tram takes you there in 40 minutes for one piastre (2½d). They are across the Nile from here, so the trip should be full of interest in every way. The Nile is on the far side of the town, and we have not seen it yet. Our scout officer is thinking of taking us for a three days' trek in that direction, tramping, bivouacking and making reports on the military aspect of the country. It should be a grand outing, for the Major is much too good a sort not to give us plenty of opportunities for sight-seeing. The other places most visited are Old Cairo, where there are old palaces and tombs of the Mamelouks and the museum of antiquities somewhere in the town. It is surprising how difficult it is for an Englishman to get anything he wants here. The lower natives, of course, speak nothing but Arabic and their dialect of course is very different from book Arabic. The shops and cafes in the better part of the town are entirely in the hands of Greeks and Italians, and a fair number of French. The best educated Egyptians, who are a very courtesy and intelligent class of men speak both French and English, but they are much more familiar with French than with English, probably because the Greeks and Italians with whom they have dealings every day, in nearly all speak French, but very little English. I met one white man who could not speak a word of English, French or German, so I had to give him up in disgust. We had some trouble with the coinage at first, but it is really very simple. The piastre is the standard coin, and there are also ½ piastres, and 2, 5, 10. 20. and 40 piastre coins, all silver. The piastre and ½ piastre are nickel. Our pay next Monday, including some back pay is to be nearly 400 piastres, which sounds like a small fortune, and will really go much further than £4 in New Zealand. Living is very cheap. Meat is scarce and rather dear, but poultry and eggs are cheap. A meal of three eggs, with, bread, rice, custard, and tea or beer, costs three piastres (7½d). Butter is practically never used in the country, though we have had plenty so far in camp. A piastre will buy a good glass of wine, 10 oranges, 20 tomatoes, or a dozen post cards. You get a shave, a haircut, and a newspaper for a piastre apiece. The train fare to town (8 miles) is a ½ piastre, second class. On the whole, we must admit that we are having a very good time here. It was hardly what we left our happy homes for, but perhaps our chance of service will come later. In the meantime we are having a happy healthy life, and we should be in good form if we do get to the front. If only we could get that New Zealand mail I would have no grievance left."

Timaru Herald, 11 February 1915, Page 5 NEWS FROM EGYPT.
BY CORPORAL C. MALTHUS, M.A.
Yesterday we published a long letter from Corporal C. Malthus, M.A. Today we publish extracts from another letter by the same writer to his mother in Timaru. Writing under date Dec. 20. Corporal Malthus says:— "The English newspapers, which came by yesterday's mail, say that the Australians and New Zealanders are training in Egypt, and will go to the front in February. Of course that is only newspaper talk, and not official, but I think it is probably right. If it is, we will be very fortunate in having had a pleasant holiday here; but it we are kept much longer than that, I believe we will get to hate the place. It is just an ideal place for a course of military training, but there is nothing homely or comfortable in our life. I would give anything to sleep in a bed, or eat a home meal, or sit in an arm-chair in a familiar room. There is plenty of fresh air in the desert — in fact, it is horribly chilly in the early hours-— but the dust is awful when we are on the march, and the sun is scorching hot at mid-day. There is practically no wind here; I think that accounts for the great heat. Our conditions are being much improved by the erection of dining sheds, which we expect to use in about a fortnight. It will be miles better than "pigging" in our tents. At first we hoped to get straw mattresses, such as the English troops have, but now we are quite reconciled to the sand. I really think I could sleep on the clothes line or anywhere now. The sand is very dusty— more like clay dust or gravel—so to keep our blankets from getting too filthy, we have to water the floor of the tent, and it sets as hard as concrete. You would think sleep was impossible on such a bed, but we never had any trouble from the first— I suppose, because we are thoroughly tired every night. Our time-table has been slightly altered since last week. Reveille is now at 5.30, breakfast 6.30. day's work 7.15 to 2, with haversack ration, rifle parade 3.30 to 4, and dinner at 5. The alteration was very unpopular, on account of the early rising, and also because we either have to get dinner in town, which is very expensive here, or else cut our leave short by staying in camp for it. To make up for this, our leave was extended till 10 which makes the evening much better, but also makes sleep a rather scarce commodity.
Our scouts have had some pleasant outings in the Oasis— a big stretch of fertile country to the north of our camp. Cairo lies due south, and there is desert on the east and west, but to the north there is this Oasis, wonderfully fertile land, and thickly dotted with villages. For the last few days we have been out in the desert with the regiment, but for the week before that we went out every day, in patrols of seven, just rambling round exploring the country, for practice in reconnaissance. It is irrigation time just now and you have to stick to the footpaths which divide the fields —there are no fences—or else follow the bridle tracks along the banks of the canals. There is a canal about every mile or less, and any number of foot-paths which are raised a foot or so above the level of the fields. The fields themselves are divided by ditches into small areas about ten yards square. The water is allowed to flow through these ditches, and practically swamp the fields, though there is no water shoving through the young green crops. The chief crops are maize, sugar and rice, also alfalqua (a kind of fodder like lucerne), cotton, millet, and plenty of date plantations. The landscape are wonderfully beautiful, and the villages picturesque but filthy. The land yields about 16 profit per acre three and sometimes four crops a year. The country folk are honest and obliging, very different from the riffraff of Cairo. The head of the village generally comes out in state to greet us and his perfectly dignity bearing is quite embarrassing. They live very plainly....

Star 15 February 1915, Page 4 TIMARU TROOPER'S LETTER.
SEEING THE SIGHTS OF EGYPT.
THE RUINS OF MEMPHIS. Mrs H. P. Malthus, of Timaru, has received several interesting letters from her son, Corporal Cecil Malthus, M.A., who is in Egypt with the Expeditionary Force, of which the following are extracts: Yesterday was the best day I have spent here yet. Fred. Hall-Jones, a friend of his named Seddon — no relation to R. J.— and myself caught an early train to Badrashein, a station about twenty miles on the Upper Egypt line, to see the ruins of Memphis and Sakkarah. Memphis was one of the greatest cities of ancient Egypt, and must have covered miles of country. It was larger than Thebes and Karnak, where all the ruins are to-day, but scarcely a trace of it remains. All the stone must have been removed to build new cities. There is nothing now to mark the site except the two colossal statues of Raraeses II. (the Pharaoah who oppressed the Israelites) and a large alabaster Sphinx. The Colossi are very fine statues, wonderfully well preserved, but the Sphinx is a perfect masterpiece — the finest art I have yet been privileged to see. The site of Memphis is down on the alluvial plain or the Nile. From there, we struck across country on a two hour tramp to Sakkarah, on the edge of the desert plateau, the burial place of Memphis. We have learnt that it is infinitely better to dispense with guides, provided you have a handbook, and a strong enough flow of language to persuade the scoundrels that they are not wanted. Donkey riding is also a nuisance, if you wish to see things in the proper frame of mind. Unimpeded, we enjoyed the walk, and reached our destination in time to eat our Christmas dinner (of bread and butter) on the shady side of the great step Pyramid, the oldest historic building in the world."

PYRAMIDS AND TEMPLES.
There are fully a dozen pyramids, but they are inferior to those of Ghizeh and only one is worth investigating. As our time was strictly limited, we confined our attention to a few of the most celebrated tombs. First we entered the tomb of Ptah Hotep, then the subterranean temple of Ti, and the tomb of Meraruka. All these are very similar, consisting each of a large number of chambers, the contents of which have all been removed to museums, but the wonderful sculpture and painting remain on the walls. Egyptian art was unfortunately extremely conventional, but these works were executed with wonderful skill. The Temple of Ti is perhaps the most elaborately decorated, and the colours are remarkably vivid. The subjects treated by the artists are limited to religious rites, such as the sacrifice of animals and the offerings made to the king, and the occupations of the royal household in peace and war, especially hunting, fishing and feasting. Occasionally in some little corner of the design, the artist manages to break away from conventional ideas and reveals the highest genius. We reserved till the last the most impressive and wonderful of all these monuments, the Serapeum, or Mausoleum of Apis, the sacred bull of Ptah. It consists of a great underground corridor, nearly a quarter of a mile in length, along which are ranged twenty-four huge mortuary chambers, nearly all containing solid granite sarcophagi or coffins about 20ft by 12ft, and weighing nearly eighty tons apiece. Each is hewn, of course, from a single block. They form a striking testimony to the skill and resources of the ancient engineers. In one of the chambers were found the actual footprints of the workmen who, 5000 years before, had closed and sealed, the tomb containing the sacred mummies. We just finished the tombs in time to rush to the top of the Chios Pyramid for the sunset—a glorious one it was, and the view grand beyond description.

IN AN ARAB VILLAGE.
We were strolling back to the station by moonlight, when we came to an Arab village near the Colossi, and the old Sheikh, a perfect specimen of Nature's gentleman, invited us to stay for coffee. His retainers spread a fine mat in a palm grove, and he took off his cloak for us to lean our elbows on. It was a most delightful experience. The menu was hot smoking pancakes, with delicious dates and strong, pungent coffee. None, of them could speak a word of English, and our Arabic is scanty, so naturally the meal was rather solemn. The old fellow insisted on escorting us half-way to the station, and we parted the best of friends. "Inglesi kwis" ("Englishman good") — you hear it everywhere. There was still an hour to wait for the train, so we allowed a donkey and a boy to take us into a native cafe, where our entry caused a considerable stir. We were regarded as a sort of joke (the dignified Arab must firmly believe that our colonial troops are all mad), but again we were treated with extreme goodwill. We got some eggs, coffee and wine — not very good — and smoked one of their big chibouks or water pipes, which we found extremely sweet and pleasant. It was nearly midnight when we got back to camp, half dazed with the fullness of the day."

Timaru Herald, 1 April 1915, Page 8 THE CANAL SKIRMISH.
TIMARU BOY IN IT:  HIS BAPTISM OF FIRE. Corporal Cecil Malthus, M.A., who left with the Expeditionary Force from New Zealand, gives a very interesting account of the fighting in the Suez Canal zone, in a letter to his mother, Mrs H. P. Malthus, Otipua Road, Timaru. The letter is dated February 6, but contains no address. "It is only eleven days, he writes, "since we left our last base, but it seems longer. We were getting rather tired of the last place, and welcomed the move. "We are very well off here, though of course it is more like active service conditions than before ...
    Things are getting more serious now. The scouts put in some useful practice in reconnaissance and we had a good look around. While we were out on this work I had my first sight of troops in action. We were on high ground near the camp, and got a distant view of a skirmish in which the artillery played a big part. The same afternoon it happened to be the turn of the first- two platoons of our company to do outpost duty some distance away. This had been done in turn by several other companies previously, but it happened quite accidentally that we had the luck to be the first—(Censor here deletes several words) —troops engaged. We left camp early in the afternoon, so as to reach outpost well before dark. We had to carry full marching order, which is a terrific weight nowadays; the ammunition and blanket make a great difference.

The early part of the night was horribly windy—the sand even spoilt the food we were trying to eat. We thought there might be something interesting happening so I said, nothing about my scout's privilege when I was told to go on guard. However, nothing happened till I had finished my last shift, and was thinking to get some sleep, when the Turks opened heavy fire some distance along our front. This soon slackened, and it was not for several hours that we were able to open fire, and even then it was mostly at long range. We banged away without much success and less loss for several hours, when the enemy got beyond our range. We had only one man wounded, but the poor has died since. No sooner had the rifle fire ceased than the Turkish shrapnel began. I don't mind saying I was horribly frightened, and burrowed into the sand like a rabbit. The Turkish guns seemed to be searching for ours, and their shells soon passed further along our front. Hardly a dozen shells burst over our little party, but unfortunately we lost our platoon sergeant, who was wounded, but not seriously. He is a splendid fellow. We hope to get him back before long.
    The battle slackened in the afternoon, but intermittent firing continued till midnight. We took the same outpost that night, but I was not in a sentry group, and got a good sleep in spite of wind and sand, and a heavy shower of rain. Next morning we were out before daylight, and had several hours of rather aimless sniping. Then we were relieved and journeyed back to camp, where we had a welcome rest and clean up. It was only a small part we played, but I thought our lot shaped very well, and the experience ought to do us a lot of good. The prisoners we have seen were, very ragged and hungry, but they have done well to cross that desert at all, and it must be admitted that they are fairly good quality. Still there is no doubt that we will easily settle them—they are attempting a hopeless task. Things are very quiet the first few days, but of course we have to be ready to move, on short notice.''


Published in 1965 Whitcombe & Tombs, 159 pages. TO MY WIFE who kept my letters. C.M.

What do you see on the dj?  The puggaree was the coloured cloth band worn on the felt hats, the colours of the band identified the branch of service. The puggaree is that of the infantry; the colours are khaki, scarlet and khaki. Engineers having a khaki/dark blue/khaki puggaree. Artillery being dark blue/scarlet/ dark blue. The right side of the brim is turned up and held in position by a cord attached lion's head badge with a hook fastened high on the side of the crown. Surely that's not his rifle! I don't know if he really had a hand in designing the dust jacket but that is his photo in the frame and I guess those are his medals, and probably that's one of his original postcards and there is a dog tag. As for Cecil's war memorabilia - I'm unaware of any physical mementoes. In a couple of places in his books he mentions losing everything when evacuated to hospital etc. so I think nothing survived. The books were mainly informed by the letters he sent home which his future wife faithfully kept. They're now held by the Canterbury Public Library.

This is the NZ version of the slouch felt hat with it bashed in the middle. Most of our troops didn't even wear Lemon Squeezers in 1915. There were three units who did. The Wellington Infantry Regiment, the Otago Mounted Rifles, and the New Zealand Artillery. Everyone else's official headgear was the Fore-and-Aft creased Slouch Hat (known today as the Mounted Rifles Hat), which on the departure of the main body was worn with the left side folded up by regulation. In Egypt these were changed to worn with the brim down all round. It wasn't till 1916 that all of the NZ division changed to the Lemon Squeezer, with the NZ Mounted Rifles Brigade (Auckland, Wellington, and Canterbury Mounted Rifles) staying in the Mounted Rifles hat in Palestine.

The New Zealand Army "Mounted Rifles Hat" is currently worn by the various corps and regiments of the New Zealand Army. In all cases the puggaree is khaki-green-khaki, the original Mounted Rifles puggaree, with only the badge denoting the wearer's Regimental affiliation. It was originally reintroduced for wear by Queen Alexandra's Mounted Rifles in the mid-1990s, but in 2000 its issue was broadened to all Corps for wear with working dress (influenced by such use by QAMR) as well as with service dress. The typical NZ army lemon squeezer was worn on all but the most important occasions and takes precedence over the slouch hat. The slouch hat predates the introduction of the lemon squeezer hat (which did not appear until after the Boer War) and is worn brim down.  "Our flat brims, our peaked hat, were our pride and joy."

NZ lemon squeezer was introduced in 1916. 40764 Private George Blakeway, 2nd Battalion, Canterbury Regiment infantry hat. The WW1 'Squeezers' stiff brimmed hats are recognisable by the very high peak, stitch patterns, the khaki & red infantry puggaree. The hat was a contracted items made by Stetson, who had factories in New Zealand and Australia at the time whereas in WW2 most were made by government-owned factories.  The "lemon squeezer" was worn to a certain extent during World War II, although often replaced by more convenient forage caps or berets. Baden-Powell wore a Steston campaign hat. In 2012 it was announced that the "lemon squeezer" was to be replaced for ceremonial wear by the "Mounted Rifles Hat"; a headdress resembling that of the Australian Army but without the turned-up side rim.

The Gallipoli Star

Cecil lost his medals. He wrote for information about the Gallipoli Star. The 1914-15 Star was re-issued to Cecil in February 1965 the year the book was published. He signed a declaration it was lost between 1923 and 1933 when he was overseas. The medal ribbon on the postcard appears to be the Gallipoli Star which was planned to be issued to Australian and New Zealand troops but was never issued because to do so would have been unfair on the British and Indian troops at Gallipoli. Info from "Ribbons of Orders, Decorations and Medals" by Blandford Press. The colours of the ribbon gold representing Australian wattle, red for the colour of Australian gum blossom and the New Zealand rata flower, blue representing the ocean and silver grey, representing New Zealand fern.

A few snippets from the book.

That memorable 3rd August, 1914, was a bank holiday in Nelson and we went for a glorious tramp up the Dun Mountain track. The expected declaration of war was made the next day. Malthus recalled: "It was agreed that it was the urgent duty of every able-bodied man to consider the question of enlisting, and that seeing service gave us a thrill of pure joy, and indeed the feeling throughout New Zealand was mainly one of pleasurable excitement... Our task lay plain before us. Without a pang, without doubt or hesitation, we dropped the life that had absorbed us. No resolve or decision was involved. It just had to be that way. And so the great adventure began....

Quinn's Post itself was subdivided into six little garrison or separate commands, requiring about 20 men to hold them, with a good many more in supports. No. 3 and No. 4 at the head of the staircase was the scene of the strangest and most terrible struggle in all history. The Turkish trenches were only seven yards away and at one point No. 4 we had a listening post just 6 feet from the Turk line. In fifty desperate battles we remained in possession. The retention of Quinn's Post in the face of the most determined enemy assaults had been perhaps the most magnificent of the many great achievements of the Australians up to that date. The worse crisis were cheerfully left behind and forgot. The soldiers at Anzac just kept their mouths shut and got on with the next job. Owning to the severe mental and physical strain of a night in Quinn's the garrison was relieved every morning. The Turks has generally a good supply of bombs mostly of the German 'cricket ball" type. 

The beach was the centre of life at Anzac. There one could bathe and wash clothes in the sea, even buy special provisions at special rates from the sailors who came ashore. The ordinary soldier had seldom than a jumbled impression of what was going on. A rhyme that had some currency originated in our platoon:

A man didn't need a rifle, he hardly ever shoot.
He only needs a pair of shorts and a hefty pair of boots.
He needs a bloody shovel to dig a bloody track,
And a bloody box of ammo, to hump it, lump it, hump it,
To hump it on his back. 


The South Canterbury Museum has an exhibition with a scale model of the Gallipoli Peninsula.

His friend Ted (E.J.) Baigent of Opotiki allowed Cecil to quote from his diary.

Timaru at the Front

Timaru Herald, 22 October 1915, Page 2
TOO LATE FOR THE ATTACK. LANCE-CORPORAL C. MALTHUS. Lance-Corporal C. Malthus, writing to his mother, under date August 24th, says:— "I lost all my belongings again between the trip to Lemnos and this last engagement. I suppose you will know from the cables that we have made a big advance from the left of our old position. I got back from Lemnos three days after it began and so missed the heaviest fighting. I had a very good time at Lemnos the last- few days after I had been discharged from Hospital, and was waiting for a boat to come back to ______ . The New Zealand Mounted Ambulance were encamped there. Some of the Timaru members, Bill Tait, Roy Fitzgerald, and George Thomson, treated us well myself and Claude Head, another Timaru boy. They insisted on putting us up and fed us like old timers. We got away on Sunday, August 8th. and the big fight had begun on Friday. By the time I rejoined my company our part of the line was pretty well settled down in its new position though there was heavy fighting elsewhere for a week after. . . I have been promoted Lance-Corporal, as some of our platoon's n.c.o.'s are away for a rest. . I have received parcels of sweets, etc., but no letters for seven weeks. I am very much better in health and spirits. Don't worry about the casualties, they are mostly slight wounds."  

Censors edited personal letters deleting words.

Press, 22 February 1916, Page 9 LAST DAYS OF ANZAC.
AS THE TROOPS SAW THEM
Corporal Cecil Malthus, of Timaru and late of Canterbury College, writing from Cheshire Ridge, under date December 13th, mentions that besides the gifts he received from home a parcel of cigarettes was sent to him from the Canterbury College Club. He noticed by the papers which are sent him that there was a great outcry about draining the country of its manhood in order to get men for the war, yet in every paper he saw the names of dozens of young men who ought to be at the Front.

A CHEERFUL SPIRIT.
Writing from the 15th General Hospital, Alexandria, under date January 1st, Corporal Malthus says that though he was in hospital he was not really ill only in that rough life, if a man got a little bit off colour, the only thing for it was to be sent to hospital. Continuing he says:—"It might seem that I have had a bad run but really have been very lucky. I have come through everything, not without a scratch, but without a wound worth mentioning— and we have been terribly near to death time and again. I have had my share of the fashionable epidemics, first dysentery and now yellow jaundice. I have seen more service than any other man in my company except one who has never been away from it at all. I have only missed three weeks on the Peninsula. It has always happened that our crowd were resting whenever I have been ill. So on the whole I see no cause to complain and I am beginning the new year brightly, feeling much better and in very good spirits. It is very comfortable in hospital and it is a treat to get civilised food again. The bread is French loaves with real butter on it and the milk is real cow's milk

THEIR LAST POST
Our last post on the peninsula, Cheshire Ridge, was the easiest we ever had, and so safe that a single sentry group was enough, in the daytime, for the whole of our company's sector, so that practically the whole company except the platoon which was in the firing line at night, were available for pick and shovel work, always, of course, with their rifles and equipment handy. There was an elaborate system of tunnels—six of them, all intended to join up together. They were all at different grades and angles, and my job was to co-operate with the engineers Canterbury College men, Lush and Doak—and see that each shift knew what was to be done; also to keep them supplied with lights and sharp picks. Then every second night I was in charge of the patrol down the gully in front of our line. This is rather interesting work, with possibilities of adventure, but it is very exhausting. One's eyes and ears and nerves are strained to the utmost all the time. However, nothing much ever happened. Only one night we heard the Turkish patrol moving away as we approached them, and another night we heard movements in the scrub not five hundred yards away, and lay there paralysed with fright for an hour. However, when at last we backed cautiously away nothing happened, so we concluded it was only one man, probably more frightened than ourselves. A patrol does not go out to look for trouble, so we let him lie.
    On the whole we never had a better time than on Cheshire Ridge. Our company had only five casualties in six weeks, and perhaps a dozen sick. There was one spell of cold weather, with rain, snow and sleet. I spent a terrible night in the firing line, but slept like a log all next day and was none the worse. The Tommies, who were on lower and wetter, ground, suffered terrible hardships. Some were found dead at their posts, others were drowned by falling into flooded trenches with their, heavy gear on. Turkish prisoners said that their losses were very severe. That was just one taste of what a winter campaign is like, and I thank God, selfishly, that we are out of it.

PREPARATIONS
Rumours of evacuation began about the 12th December, when the mail was stopped and some items of our rations ran short and were not renewed. I think it was the hard plain fare at this time that upset my digestion, but there was no time to be ill just then. At first we refused to believe in the evacuation, though we saw troops departing every night and a general clearance being made. We couldn't deny the commonsense of it, yet if was a bitter blow to our pride, and we were leaving some good friends behind, in very lonely graves. However, when it became a certainly, we took it cheerfully enough, and it was not long before our turn came to go. The 2nd and 12th boys left on the second last night, leaving the 1st and 13th the honour of holding our sector to the last. The arrangements for the embarkation were faultless, and are another tribute to the efficient working of the navy."We got away all serene without bustle or excitement, and reached Lemnos on Sunday the 19th. Some of the Australians, who left the Peninsula before us were already on transports and leaving for Egypt, so we expected a very short stay in Lemnos, and were not surprised when they took us to a very rough makeshift camp and crammed us seventeen in a tent.

MAILS AT LEMNOS
As it happened, we stayed at Lemnos a week, including Christmas, which was rather hard luck. The second day there I got my big mail—(67 letters, 22 papers, and l0 parcels. The letters, with what I had got before, make up a fairly complete series, so all's well that ends well, I suppose. There was a lot of news in the letters that I had not heard before, but it is all so old that I need not comment on it now. I met Cuthbert Parr, and Jack Gillies, who are in the Otago Battalion, also Bob Patrick, another High School old boy, and they helped to do justice to the Christmas cake, and my tent mates did, the rest. I managed to eat a piece the first day before I completely lost my appetite, but that was the end of my Christmas festivities. I didn't miss much, for there was only rice for Christmas dinner and no gifts reached us. Perhaps they have got them since coming here.

GETTING AWAY
I kept away from the doctor till the anchor was weighed on the troopship Ascanius Monday morning. I have seen enough of Lemnos, and was determined not to be left behind there. I was admitted to the hospital on board, and was made very comfortable. We hbad a good trip, though they say our escort sank one enemy submarine and captured another. We reached here on Wednesday morning, and after lying in the harbour all day, I was brought to the hospital by motor about midnight. At the same time our battalion entrained for an unknown destination. They were expecting to go to the old camp at Zeitun, and were looking forward to a happy New Year. I have not heard yet where they have really gone to. Allan Farquhar, from Fairlie, is in the next bed to me, with the same complaint. I suppose you know there has been some fighting on the Western frontier of Egypt. That makes our future movements very uncertain. Quite likely we will be here for the winter, or perhaps we will soon be off to France or Serbia. It doesn't matter to us where it is. I am hoping to join the battalion before long, but don't intend to do so until properly fit."

Mrs H. P. Malthus, of Timaru

Press, 14 October 1916, Page 10
Mrs H. P. Malthus, of Timaru, has received word that her son, Sergeant Cecil Malthus, was wounded in the feet, jaw, and hand, and admitted to hospital on September 16th.

Colonist, 22 November 1916, Page 4
''I have got into the honours list at last," writes Sergeant Cecil Malthus, M.A., of Timaru, in a letter to his mother. Though he got badly smashed in the battle on the Somme, his injuries being such that he will not be permitted to return to- the firing-line, he writes as cheerfully as usual. His letters were written from a hospital at Rouen, the first one being written with the left band, as his right hand was out of commission. The following extracts are from two brief letters received by a recent mail: —"I have had my usual marvellous good hick, or I would not be alive at all. I am on the roll of honour at last. I was hit by a bomb exploding right under me, but the only serious wound is in the right foot, which is rather badly shattered. The doctor thinks amputation will be necessary, but he is trying to do without it. The boys made another successful attack and that is the main tiling. It. is rather annoying to miss my commission, which I would have got this week.'' "I am getting on very well indeed. I had an operation last week, when part of my right foot was cut away, and it is to be amputated at the- instep as soon as it is healthy and healing. 1 have got my ticket for England, and will have the operation there. The other wounds are practically healed already. You see I am using my right band again. Sergeant Malthus left with the Main Body, and after going through the Gallipoli campaign went to France, where he has been fighting ever since. In order to join the forces he left his position as assistant master at Nelson College.

Colonist, 20 February 1917, Page 4 RETURNING SOLDIERS. Sailed from Southampton 13 Jan. 1917.
A hospital ship, Marama, due to arrive at Auckland from the Homeland on March 4th, at Wellington March 6th, Lyttelton March 7th, and Port Chalmers March 8th, under Major C. V. Leeming, of Christchurch is bringing 538 returned invalids and wounded soldiers struck off strength of NZEF. The following, men who enlisted: Sergeant C. Malthus (Mr. H. P. Malthus, Timaru). Sergeant Malthus was on the teaching staff of the Boys' College, and left New Zealand with the Main Body.
Abington, A., 6/2227, Timaru (m.) for mother
Ashwell, L. 15/691a, R.S.M., Temuka (f.)
Carrick, P.M., 11247, Timaru (w.) for wife
Chapman, H. J. L., 23/1012, Temuka (f.)
Griffen, E. J., 17711, Timaru (s.) for sister
Holdgate, Capt. E. A. G.  6/1873, Timaru
Rolleston, Lance-Corpl. J.C., 1391, Timaru (m.) mother
Russell, R., 25/236, Fairlie (m.)
Verity, C. S., 7/1298. Timaru (f.) father

6 April 1916 embarked for France per Franconia from Port Said.
Cecil was wounded in action in the field 30 Sept. 1916.  Admitted No. 5 Hosp. Rouen.
3 Oct. 1916 embarked in Caris Castle
17 Oct. 1916 admitted Brockenhurst bomb wound right foot, amputation of 1st & 2nd toes right foot. Capt. G.W. Mathews officer in medical charge of case. D.S. Wylie, Lt. Colonel. NZMC officer in charge of Hospital.

Timaru Herald, 10 July 1919, Page 3 OBITUARY
MRS H. P. MALTHUS. Yesterday there was laid to rest in Timaru cemetery (the service being conducted by the Ven. Archdeacon Jacob), another of the early settlers in the person, of Mrs H. P. Malthus —a lady who served her day and generation most worthily. Born in 1851 at Newtown Stuart, County Tyrone, Ireland, she came out to New Zealand in 1868. Two years later she married and has resided in Canterbury ever since. She and her husband first made their home in the rugged bush-clad country, west of Hanmer Plains, where they had a considerable scope of country. With no roads, no railways, and no bridges it was a case of subduing the wilderness under difficulties. All journeys from, their home had to be made on horseback. Christchurch was distant 120 miles, and often the deceased lady made the journey on horseback, fording treacherous rivers, sometimes with a baby in front of her on the saddle. Later she lived at Kirwee and West Melton, and came to Timaru in 1882 where she has since remained. Besides playing a full part in the pioneering work of her day Mrs Malthus reared a family of ten children — four daughters and six sons. Of a very kindly disposition she never tired of doing good to those about her and she will ever be held in affectionate remembrance by fill who had the pleasure of her acquaintance. She is survived by her husband and children, and 24 grand-children.

Eliza Somerville, age 21, and sister Ann Somerville, age 19, from Tyrone and were domestic servants, came out on the "Light Brigade" which arrived in Lyttelton 26th August 1868 from London. Elizabeth Caroline Somerville born 17th April 1851, married in 1879, died 5th July 1919. Also her husband Henry Perceval MALTHUS born 27th June 1842 at Dartmouth, Devon died 29th March 1925. We know Henry and his brother Charles Edward Daniel arrived together in NZ in 1862 but there's no mention of the name of the ship they came on.

Children of Elizabeth Caroline and Henry Perceval MATHLUS:
Eliza
Henrietta
Tracy
Lucy
Charles
1879 Malthus Samuel
1881 Malthus Jane Sommerville
1884 Malthus Stephen
1888 Malthus Harry Leonard
1889 Malthus Reginald
1890 Malthus Cecil

His wife -Jessie Hazel Annandale Watters

Timaru Herald, 15 February 1919, Page 6 MARRIAGE.
MALTHUS—WATTERS — On December 18th, 1918, at St. Andrews Church, Ashburton, by the Rev. George Miller, Cecil Malthus to Hazel Watters.

New Zealand Herald, 7 August 1933, Page 10
Professor Cecil Malthus, an old boy of the Timaru Boys' High School, and a graduate of Canterbury College, has been granted a doctorate of literature for a thesis written in French, on the influence of Shakespeare on the French dramatist and poet, Alfred de Musset. Dr. Malthus is professor of modern languages at Hobart University.

 

South Canterbury NZGenWeb Project