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Re: Lead found

August 30 2015 at 3:26 PM
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Nelson  (no login)
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Response to Lead found

Continuing with the Mark VII 3-inch landing gun, I wanted to know what you know about the numbers putatively sent, because so far neither American, Australian, nor Dutch sources have revealed a definitive answer. We’re aware that at least three modernized (i.e., high-speeded) Mark VII landing guns have turned up in Australia—about the only reason at all we know about these old landing guns Down Under—and we understand indirectly or from hearsay that they had been purchased by the Dutch, but got diverted to Oz. “The whole lot” could have been a minimum of 15, or even more IF some larger number had been freed up by the United States. We know that a limber was part of the standard issue: Mark VII gun, field carriage, limber, and accoutrements. We know that at some point someone high-speeded this uncertain number of Mark VII landing guns with Martin Parry kit (the someones had to be either the Yanks or the Aussies, because the Dutchies likely never laid hands on them). IF limbers accompanied the guns, they would have been high-speeded, too, because otherwise what would have been the point of including them? Finally, we know that a load of Mark VII landing guns were NOT aboard the Pensacola convoy that arrived at Brisbane in late December 1941. Thass about all we do know about these guns, but my feeling is that a paper trail must exist out there somewhere. Just maybe lurking out there is the odd photo of such guns in wartime Oz....or even a handful at dockside in Surabaya.

As regards the much better Mark XI 3-inch landing gun/Mark VI split-trail field carriage, no, decidedly NOT an Ehrhardt/Rheinische/Rheinmetall design. There is still uncertainty to what degree the army Model 1916 3-inch (later 75mm) field gun influenced the Mark XI, or even more likely vice versa. I did not want to confuse the numbers issue with the Mark VII landing guns, previously stablemates at Cavite, but as a matter revealed more than once in this forum, do recall that 14 Mark XI 3-inch landing guns were transferred from the 16th Naval District, Manila Bay, to the U.S. Army in the Philippines. These Mark XI landing guns were as originally configured and not high-speeded, included a quantity of ammunition (if memory serves, both HE and shrapnel), and did see minimal service as beach defense guns and the like.


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