One of the very first things I posted here on Forgotten Weapons was an article on a French rifle called the Hagen (it was designed by a Norwegian). I posted an article on it written in French by Jean Huon, but wasn’t able to read it. Now, thanks to reader Thibaud, we have an English [...]
The 37mm gun was found in many guises during World War One – that caliber was the smallest allowed to use exploding projectiles by the 1899 Hague accords. Every nation in the world, it seems, used 37mm guns of one type or another. Well, one particular version I had the chance to look at was [...]
Most of the books I look at are primarily text-based, and today I figured we should do something a little bit different. Armor Plate Press, run by Tom Laemlein, specializes in photographic studies of various weapons (and vehicular) topics. Today’s book is The Yanks Are Coming! Firepower of the American Doughboy in World War One [...]
Chain mail appeared in a couple different forms during World War I – the most well-known is probably the mail facemasks developed for tank crews. These were intended to protect crew members from steel shards that would fragment off the interior of the tank’s armor plate when taking machine gun fire. There were also metal-lined [...]
Congratulations on your status as French colony, Senegal! Now we’re going to take you to a freezing European forest to fight Germans.
Senegalese Free French soldiers at the Battle of the Bulge in 1944, armed with a British Bren and an American 1903 Springfield. The helmets are American ones, emblazoned with the anchor emblem [...]
This post started as just a quickie, because I happened to find a vintage photo of a couple French WWI soldiers using a crossbow/ballista type device to throw grenades. I realized, looking at the photo, that I’d actually seen one of them in person, as the Paris Musée de l’Armée. The plan was to post [...]
Courtesy of reader Robert, we have a couple documents for you today. First up is a British 1918 manual on identifying different types of ammunition by projectile, case, and packaging markings. Given the variety of artillery in Commonwealth use by that time, I’m sure this manual was a welcome source of information for new ordnance [...]
Looks a bit verdant for North Africa…
Zouaves on maneuvers with M1886 Lebel rifles, in 1909.
The Lebel with that epee bayonet was a really long weapon.
Malagasy soldier from the French army, World War I. Armed with a M1886/93 Lebel rifle and early style bayonet with hooked quillion.
One of the characteristics that often leads me to be particularly interested in a given gun is a long and convoluted history. I really enjoy finding firearms that have found their way across the world and back. One entire category of rifles that did just that were the hundreds of thousands of rifles made in [...]