Trooper Fred Foote - Signaller, Auckland Mounted Rifles

NZMRA Members and members of the public are invited to add material to these photographs taken by Trooper Foote during his involvement in the Sinai Campaign beginning in 1916.
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Fred Footes personal
notes and writings


Photographs from the camera of Trooper Fredrick Foote, Signaller with the Auckland Mounted Rifles Regiment, NZMR Brigade.
(Click on thumbnails for larger images)
The images below reproduced from a "Eastman Negative Album" containing 100 x negatives, unfortunately not all the negatives survived the 90 odd year ordeal in storage, so not all the negatives made it to this display. Some strips were blacked out, others changed to become clear pieces of Celluloid. However the majority were able to be viewed, although even some of these are showing the effects of time.
Fred itemized each of the negatives with a reference comment in the album's numbered record sheets in the front of the folder and each of these comments is notated below in bold type. Other comments are from NZMR members.
"Building a Shelter, Fred"
"At Canteen Magar"
"I presume this is near the monastry of Deir Abu Magar? - more input required." - steve
"Bedouin women with animals"
"Turkish Transport Waggon captured at Gaza."
"Enemy plane taken on a stunt"
"Obelisk near Richon"
This wooden structure dedicated to the men of the Auckland Mounted Rifles is believed to have been lost to natures elements pre second world war. The men buried at this site were taken to the CWGC at Ramleh 1920.
"Fred in front of Bivy"
"Helio station, MacKay, Clark"
"Fred on Helio"
"Also in this picture are the two semaphore flags used by the NZMR. To recognise whether a semaphore signaller was facing you or facing away from you these flags were of different colours and patterns. One flag a white square with a blue cross, the other a blue flag. All communications began with the opening letter "J". - Steve
More on NZMR signals HERE
"Men Bathing"
"Officers studying Turkish positions."
"Rifle Inspection"
"Two signallers watching wreck."
"...could be from December 30, 1916 when it was stormy and cold and a minesweeper came ashore at El Arish. I'm not able to tell if the vessel is a minesweeper but the weather looks pretty miserable." - David
".... the minesweeper was "Relevo" (GY 670). She was built by Cook Welton & Gemmel 23/01/1912 for G F Sleight. Requisitioned by the Royal Navy 04/1915 as a Minesweeper
Reported lost 30/12/1916 Vessel wrecked off El Arish Egypt
Her Details are
•Official Number 132121
•Yard Number 235
•Admiralty Number FY 1615
•Armament 1 x 12pdr
•176 GT 67 NT
•Dimensions 105.5 x 21 x 10.9
•Quarter Deck 58'
•Engines by C D Holmes 60 NHP 10 Knots
Looking again at the shadows in the photos - at least the sun is out on a cold day." - David.
"C.O. Desert Column watching wreck."
comments from NZMR Lieutenant Colonel James McCarroll's diary 1916.

29th December
We were inspected by Lieutenant-General Sir Phillip Chetwood of Desert Column, he complimented us on our recent exploits and pointed out that:- It was the first time in history that mounted troops had reconnoitered, attacked assaulted and carried a position.  Such a fine response to his first orders was most gratifying.  He being a cavalry man was able to appreciate what we could do – he admired our horses.

[note: The Anzac's had taken the garrisson town of Magdabah a few days before on the 23rd December 1916.]

A gale sprang up during the night and a mine sweeper was driven ashore.

"Fred on leave Alex"
"L. David and Fred Clark Hill 70"
Forename(s): Frederick Ruthven
Surname: Clark
Serial No.: 13/2270
First Known Rank: Trooper
Next of Kin: Robert Clark (father), Awhitu, Manukau Harbour, New Zealand
Marital Status: Single
Enlistment Address: Selwyn Street, Onehunga, Auckland, New Zealand
Military District: Auckland
Body on Embarkation: 6th Reinforcements
Embarkation Unit: Auckland Mounted Rifles
Embarkation Date: 14 August 1915
"Horses lying down after stunt."
"ANZAC Hostel, Cairo."
"...This is the old Cairo Bourse building (stock exchange) that opened in 1907 that was originally the premises of the Ottoman Bank - and was also known as 'Bourse Khediviale du Caire'. " - Greg
"Egyptian Cow."
"Egyptian Police"
"This photograph and the one above "Egyptian Cow" were taken within a minute or two from each other - the man and his cow are the same in both images." - Steve
"Headquarters on Parade."
"Camp at El Arish."
"Escort bringing in Turk and Camel."
"Camp at El Arish before railway."
"Dates relevant to this image: December 21st 1916 - Occupation of El Arish.
January 4th 1917 - Camped at the beach at El Arish." - compiled from NZMR diary.
"Helio Station."
"Cookhouse Hill 70."
"Fred on a Donkey Alex."
"B. Guthery Port Said."
"No Guthery with this spelling on the databases that served with the NZEF WW1 - However Fred may have got his friends surname spelt wrong - there are records of a Robert Guthrie with the AMR, 7th Reinforccements - this is probably the man here (see record listed with another photo below). - steve
"Statue Alex."
"Statue of Mohamed Ali on square by same name, Alexandria, Egypt.
Credited as being the founder of modern Egypt, though of Turkish origin, Mohamed Ali also died in this city on August 2nd 1849. " - Steve
"Light Train arriving Port Said."
"Aeroplane washed up by the sea."
"There were at least 2 cases involving British pilots crash landing on the beaches of the Sinai peninsula with their planes ditched behind.
One was the case of Lt. Hill who landed on the coast (due to mechanical problems) and taken prisoner by the Turks after a fire exchange of several hours from his Lewis gun (cant tell what happened to the plane).
The other was Lt. Van Ryneveldt who crush landed on the beach around spring on 1916 (after a bullet hit the engine of his machine), burned his own plane and later was rescued by a colleague who landed on the beach, had him shrink into the observers cockpit, and taken back to Egypt.
This engine might have belonged to one of these planes." - Gal
"Shipping Port Said."
"Fred in Bedouin orchard."
"Sgt T. Evans."
comment: (Probably)
Rank Last Held: Sergeant Major
Forename(s): Henry Theodore Penrhys
Surname: Evans
Serial No.: 13/681
First Known Rank: Sergeant
Next of Kin: W.H. Penrhys Evans, Bombay, Auckland, New Zealand
Enlistment Address: Bombay, Auckland, New Zealand
Military District: Auckland
Body on Embarkation: 2nd Reinforcements
Embarkation Unit: Auckland Mounted Rifles
Embarkation Date: 14 December 1914
"Hotel D.L.P. Port Said."
"One of our outposts."
"One of our outpost -part2"
"This photo and the one above are both subjects from a single negative - but with such high quality and subject matter I split the scene into two parts - this second image was to the left of the above image." - Steve.

"Camels Hill 70"

Hill 70 was a camp situated across the canal out into the Sinai desert.

"Camp Lines Hill 70."
"Pompey's Pillar Alex."
"Rolling telegraph wires."
"Trooper Fred Foote, left of frame" - Steve.
"I was searching your updates and noticed a photo in the Jan 11th 2010 update article titled Desert Telecom.  The gentleman in the centre of the title phote is my Grandfather Angus Roderick Dunning (also known as Pat) - Cheryl Tomich
"B.Guthery Hotel."
"I thought the troopers face had been obliterated by an aged negative mark - but on closer inspection the man is smoking a huge cigar and a bilow of smoke covers most of his face."
No Guthery this spelling: Probably:
Full Name: Robert Guthrie
Serial No.: 13/2328
First Known Rank: Corporal
Next of Kin: R. Guthrie (father), Ballykelly, Londonderry, Ireland
Marital Status: Single
Enlistment Address: 111 Manukau Road, Auckland, New Zealand
Military District: Auckland
Body on Embarkation: 7th Reinforcements
Embarkation Unit: Auckland Mounted Rifles
Embarkation Date: 9 October 1915
"Main station Port Said."
This photograph taken at 180 degrees from above photo - same decking and filigree wrought iron.
"Fara Wadi with watering trough."
"Fred in carrot patch."
"Namzak Garden Alex."
"Horse lines H.Q. Signals."
"German mine washed ashore."

"Bir et Maler."
"Bir et Maler 2 ."
"Fred on camel **** Clark."
"Fred on a camel."
"Fred and Dale [words missing] dates."
"Departing Camp."
"Police at El Arish."
"L. Going, Hill 70."
Full Name: Lawrence Roy Going
Serial No.: 13/2040
First Known Rank: Trooper
Next of Kin:

Joseph Going (father), Kamo, Whangarei, North Auckland,New Zealand

Marital Status: Single
Enlistment Address: Kamo, New Zealand
Military District: Auckland
Body on Embarkation: 6th Reinforcements
Embarkation Unit: Auckland Mounted Rifles
Embarkation Date: 14 August 1915
Place of Embarkation: Wellington, New Zealand
"Wagon captured at Gaza."
"Unloading stores."
Unloading mutton from New Zealand from a cargo boat off shore at El Arish.
"Some of our horses."
"Aussie Camp."
"Sweetwater Canal"
"Swimming Horses, El Arish."
Sixty-four images from one hundred negatives taken from the "Fred Foote Family Collection", completed scanning January 2010. Most of the remaining images were either deterioated beyond repair, close duplications of scenes, or of very poor quality. Further pages will be dedicated to files and phtographs taken by Trooper Foote in the near future.