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World War Two - Weapons and Inventions

               World War Two Film Clips

German Rifles (U.S. Dept of War, 1945)

An illustrated wartime study by the United States Department of War explaining the German Gewehr 98 and the Gewehr 41: their caliber, weight, range and over-all length.

We highly recommend that you watch the film clip linked below for additional information.

Click here to read about the German M.G. 34.


The Wonderful World of the Panzerfaust (Volkischer Beobacher, 1945)

Although the attached cartoon illustrations from "Volkischer Beobacher" depicts a German soldier using a Panzerfaust anti-tank weapon, the intended readership was actually the old men and under-age boys who made up the out-gunned and under-manned Volkssturm militia units at the close of the war. The panzerfaust ("tank fist") has been characterized as the first expendable anti-tank RPG. Also included in this file is the U.S. Army study concerning this weapon.


The VT Radio Fuse (Yank Magazine, 1945)

Its been said that World War Two was the first high-tech war, and a passing look at many of the military tools used between 1939 and 1945 will bare that out to be true. It was not only th the first war in which jet engines and atomic bombs were used, but also the first war to deploy walkie-talkie radios, rockets, and radar. This article concerns what the U.S. Department of War classified as a weapons system just as revolutionary as the atomic bomb: the VT fuse artillery shell (a.k.a. the time proximity fuse). It was used with great success in various theaters: anti-Kamikaze in the Pacific, anti-personnel in the Ardennes and anti V-1 in defense of Britain.

This is a short article that goes into greater detail outlining the successes listed above and explains how the system worked; it also is accompanied by a diagram of the shell.

Click here to learn about the timing fuses designed for W.W. I shrapnel shells.


The Pershing M26 Tank (Yank Magazine, 1945)

"Although the the Pershing M26 didn't get into the fighting in Europe until very late in the game (March, 1945), it was long enough to prove itself. This new 43-toner is the Ordnance Department's answer to the heavier German Tiger. It mounts a 90-mm high-velocity gun, equipped with a muzzle-brake, as opposed to the 88-mm on a Tiger."

The M26 Pershing tank was the one featured in the movie, Fury (2014).


The American 4.5 Multiple Rocket Launcher (Yank Magazine, 1945)

To the American G.I.s serving along the Italian Front, the presence of rockets was like a page out of a Buck Rogers comic book. They had grown accustomed to seeing them mounted on the wings of quickly speeding American fighter aircraft, but to see and hear them up close and personal when fixed to the turret of a Sherman tank (pictured) seemed altogether too bizarre. This article, "Rockets in Italy", will allow you to learn about the use and deployment of the U.S. Army's "ground rocket-gun" and how it amazed all the men who ever came near enough to see one.

Click here to read about one of the greatest innovations by 20th Century chemists: plastic.


The American Sniper Rifle (U.S. Infantry Drill Manual, 1911)

A black and white diagram depicting the breach of the 1903 Springfield rifle, with all parts named. This weapon was the primary sniper rifle issued to American sharp-shooters during the course of the First and Second World War, Korea and the earlier periods of the Vietnam War.

Click here to read articles about snipers.


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