Joseph Clapham, illegally supplying liquor

Joseph Edward Clapham
Tailor, born 1888, New Zealand
Tried: 28 April 1919, Auckland Magistrate’s Court
Charge: Illegally supplying liquor to a soldier
Sentence: Fine or one month’s imprisonment

Tailor Joseph Clapham caught the train from Te Kuiti to Auckland in April 1919 for a week of big-city revelry. On Sunday 27 April police found him drinking illegally at the Alexandra Hotel. Worse, he was handing out drinks to soldiers in a back lane nearby. Under the War Regulations, civilians could supply alcohol to soldiers only on the premises on which it was sold. Sentenced to pay a fine or serve a month in prison, he chose prison.

Clapham was a returned serviceman himself, having served in the Senussi Campaign in Egypt before being discharged in June 1916 with ‘traumatic neurasthenia’ (shell shock).


Sources: Police Gazette, 1919, p. 358; Auckland Star, 28 April 1919, p. 6; Joseph Edward Clapham NZEF personnel file, AABK 18805 W5530/65 24958, Archives NZ Wellington

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