Tora Tora New Zealand will be held in Whangārei Museum’s Mim Ringer Gallery and the Whare Taonga, at Kiwi North.
Recent research by Heritage New Zealand has revealed a suite of 70 military camps across the Northland region that hosted Home Guard, 1st Division and US Military forces between 1941 and 1943. These camps were completely dismantled following their use and the Public Works Department records detailing their exact locations and operations were subsequently mis-filed in the Manukau Archives, Auckland, and so lost for decades until their rediscovery three years. As a result, the scale of 1940s US Military and Home Guard activity in Northland alone has come to light and will be shared in this exciting new exhibition.
Tora Tora New Zealand will be held in Whangārei Museum’s Mim Ringer Gallery and the Whare Taonga, at Kiwi North. Our displays will highlight specific local military camps such as at Reef Point, Kensington park in Whangarei, Dome Valley and in Warkworth and tell stories of personal experience, bringing the collective snippets of memory that the public retains together to reminisce and share with new generations. Artefacts on loan from collections around Northland and oral histories from locals who lived through this period will help deepen our community’s understanding and interest in our local World War Two experience, the international connections that were made at the time – in particular the US Army and Marine Corps which continue to this day - and the long-term impacts that the arrival of thousands of international troops had on Northland life.