8/1066 Alexander Smart, Main Body NZEF
Memorial Plaque KiA Gallipoli - Alexander Smart
The Memorial Plaque issued in commemoration of 8/1066 Private Alexander Smart, who was killed in action at Gallipoli on 6th August 1915.
Smart’s service file shows he was among Captain Wallingford’s machine gun section on Walker’s Ridge when wounded on 16 May 1915. This date is very interesting as it falls in a period when the rump of the NZ Infantry Brigade was at Cape Helles. At this point, Smart evidently returned to his parent unit, 14th South Otago Company, Otago Battalion. He was subsequently reported wounded and then believed killed on 6 August 1915, this during the preliminary moves ahead of what would become known as the Battle of Chunuk Bair.
Before the war, Smart was a horse trainer whose last address was 502 Tuam Street, Christchurch. He was 5 feet and 9.25 inches tall, with a clear complexion, blue eyes and dark brown hair. Smart’s next of kin was given as a Mrs Prothroe in Elgin, near Ashburton.
Provenance: this plaque was acquired in Ashburton in the late 1980s by medal dealer Tom Upjohn, thereafter entering a private collection in which it has remained for 30-plus years. Gallipoli death plaques are getting difficult to find, especially ones that enjoy this one's lovely patina. A photo of Smart was published in Volume 5 on the well-regard Onward Project series of books, which is a collection of N.Z.E.F. soldiers’ portraits.
Alexander Smart is unique name among memorial plaques that were issued to New Zealanders. Internationally, seven plaques were named to Alexander Smart.