The Great War Exhibition


The Great War Exhibition commemorates the very significant part that New Zealand played in the First World War. On now at Wellington's Dominion Museum Building.

The Great War Exhibition commemorates the very significant part that New Zealand played in the First World War. It marks the centenary of the world-wide cataclysm that was that particular war and opened on the 18th April 2015.

18,166 lives were lost as part of New Zealand’s involvement in the First World War; a very significant loss for New Zealand, which had a population of just over a million at the time.

It is true to say that New Zealand’s very nature was altered by the sacrifice, challenges and war-time experiences of its citizens at home and away. On the home-front the losses incurred on the other side of the world were hard to bear and as well as that the society changed radically with the whole country on a war footing.

New Zealanders and visitors to the Great War Exhibition will embark on a journey rich in personal stories and highly evocative of those times, activities, challenges and sacrifice both in relation to the contributions made by New Zealanders on the battlefields of Europe and elsewhere and also at home in war-time New Zealand.

The visitor will begin the journey by being taken through the war from the ‘big picture perspective’ in order to be able to put New Zealand’s role into context.

The first half of the exhibition will step through the war from 1914 to 1918 exploring the changing face of war as it affected those who fought in it. The second half of the exhibition will focus on New Zealand’s specific story, starting in 1915 with mobilisation and the Gallipoli campaign.

Each year the ‘New Zealand’ room will be updated to reflect the anniversary year in support of the wider WW100 commemorative program.

With support from the New Zealand Government, Sir Peter Jackson and Sir Peter’s talented team at Wingnut Films, The Exhibition will offer a unique opportunity for New Zealanders to see and feel a special part of their history from 1914 through to 1918. For visitors to these shores it will offer a remarkable chance to see an important part of New Zealand history whilst getting a glimpse of what it is to be a New Zealander.

For further information please feel free to contact the team at The Great War Exhibition on

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Date added: 23 February 2015 | Last updated: 03 March 2017

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