Martin Stagpoole

Born c1833 Ireland

What we know about Martin

Martin Stagpoole was the second of the three brothers. He was probably born in the early 1830s in Galway, Ireland. He was a Roman Catholic and likely had little or no schooling.

Martin enlisted in the 57th regiment of Foot on 15 November 1851 and served in Crimea and in New Zealand.
Records show that Martin was wounded in Crimea and in New Zealand during his serivce as a Private.

He left Bombay on the 'Star Queen' on 23 Nov 1860, arriving in Taranaki two months later on 25 Jan 1861. Martin took his discharge from the army in Wanganui on 27 November 1864 after serving exactly 13 years and 12 days which was a normal fixed period of engagement. Martin remained in the colony of New Zealand.

He married Sarah Harper, a widow, on 3 March 1868 in the Roman Catholic church, Invercargill, New Zealand.

This is the last documentry evidence of Martin's life.

Family history has Martin taking up gold prospecting in the South Island of New Zealand.

Martin is wounded

London Morning Chronicle 17 May 1855

Stagpool Martin Private 2448 57th Foot (West Middlesex) Severe Wound
Minor actions at Sebastopol 28 April 1855

 Martin Stagpoole wounded 11 March 1864 Otago Witness

Wounded at Kaitake, 11 March 1864
Extract from the Otago Witness


On Friday, March the 11th, an alarm was given in town by two settlers, who had been out on the Frankley Road, that the rebels were out in that direction. Bush parties were sent out in pursuit. With a force consisting of 84 men of the 57th, and a small detachment of the Royal Artillery under Lieutenant Larcom, with a 24-pounder howitzer and a cohorn mortar. On advancing to within 500 yards of the lower pa firing was opened upon the position. This had scarcely been done when the enemy opened a heavy cross fire from three different directions. In this predicament there was no choice other than to retreat, and this was effected in good order, the men retiring skirmishing. The greatest number of casualties occurred in the neighborhood of the gun, at which the rebels chiefly directed their fire. In the midst of the engagement, Antonio Rodiquez de Sardinha, a member of the Royal House of Portugal, and one of the mounted orderlies, displayed great gallantry by conveying two of the wounded men to the rear under fire.

Extract from: 1878 - Wells, B. The History of Taranaki-CHAPTER XXIV: THE RENEWAL OF HOSTILITIES

Stagpoole brothers and Antonio Rodrigues, wherever there is danger they are sure to be found.

The Skirmish at Kaitake
Extract from the Southern Cross 7 April 1864

Francis Hamar Arden 1841-1899 :Bell Block Stockade, New Plymouth 1863.

Bell Block Stockade in 1863

Reference Number: A-173-010 Shows blockhouse, with 2 flanking towers, stockade, flagstaffs, and military huts; Mount Taranaki. Permission of National library of New Zealand.

Available Documentary Evidence of Martin Stagpoole

Wounded in Crimea
28 April 1855.

A witness at the trial of Hori Teira
May 1863.

Wounded at Kaitake, Taranaki
11 March 1864.

Army Service
15 November 1851 to 27 November 1864.

Marriage Certificate Invercargill
3 March 1868.

Crimea medal

Crimea Medal engraved with the name Martin Stagpool
found on a beach in Invercargill, New Zealand
probably during the 1940s.
This medal is currently held by the Southland museum, Invercargill.
Records show that Martin was awarded clasps for battles at Balaklava, Inkermann and Sevastopol.

Notice appearing in the Police Gazette Western Australia

February 6 1895

Martin Stagpoole, age 60 years, height 5ft. 10 in, brown hair turning grey, sandy whiskers and beard turning grey, an ex-soldier, native of Ireland; Supposed engaged in gold digging in this Colony. Inquired by his nephew, Martin D. Stagpoole, Hawera, Taranaki, New Zealand. Information to Detective Office, Perth-M.F.