Official issuer of New Zealand stamps & commemorative coins

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1917 The Darkest Hour Silver Proof Coin

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This 1oz silver proof coin depicts New Zealand's darkest day at Passchendaele, and features two soldiers paying their respects to a fallen comrade at one of many makeshift graves.


  • Minted from 0.999 silver
  • Limited worldwide mintage of 2,500
  • Coin comes in a pressed metal tin, made to resemble those gifted to soldiers in World War I by HRH Princess Mary at Christmas
  • Depicts the darkest day in New Zealand’s military history – 12 October 1917 at Passchendaele
  • The foreground of the coin shows soldiers by a makeshift grave, while the background features the decimated landscape
  • Collectable coin commemorating New Zealand's involvement in the First World War in 1917.


12 October 1917 was the deadliest day in New Zealand’s military history. The failed attempt to capture the Belgian village of Passchendaele resulted in 3,700 New Zealand casualties, including 845 killed. The failed offensive saw many of the casualties buried in unmarked graves. After the war the Tyne Cot Cemetery was built to memorialise these fallen troops close to where they had perished, along with other sites at Buttes, Polygon Wood and Messines. This coin depicts two soldiers paying their respects to a fallen comrade at a makeshift grave, with the desolation of the landscape in the background.

Denomination: One New Zealand dollar
Composition: 0.999 silver
Weight: 1oz
Diameter: 40mm
Edge treatment: Milled
Obverse design: Portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II by Ian Rank-Broadley, United Kingdom
Shape: Round
Reverse design: Two soldiers paying their respects to a fallen comrade at Passchendaele.
Designed by: Strategy Creative, Wellington, New Zealand
Worldwide mintage limit: 2,500
Mint: Royal Australian Mint