Back in Stock: M1A1 Howitzer on M8 Carriage
Conquer any terrain with the ultra-mobile M1A1 Howitzer!
Designed shortly after World War I to replace existing light artillery pieces, the M1 75mm “pack” howitzer was a small artillery piece that could be broken down and transported by pack horses or mules. Not mass produced until the outbreak of World War II, several design improvements were added in 1940, with the new gun designated the M1A1 on M8 Carriage (replacing the original wooden-wheeled gun carriage). The lightweight field gun was mainly used to equip US Army airborne artillery battalions, but was also adopted for use by the US Marine Corps for its campaigns in the Pacific. While not as powerful as the more widely used 105mm howitzers, its small size made it more versatile and easier to transport over rough terrain.
A single howitzer was airdropped in April 1945 to the 2nd SAS Regiment, a special force composed by partisans with mixed political allegiance, Russian ex-POWs, and Wehrmacht deserters, coordinated by Major Roy Farran. The gun was baptized “Molto Stanco” (“Very tired” in Italian) and used in the course of Operation Tombola to harass enemy convoys driving up and down along Route 12 between Modena and Florence. On 21 April 1945 the howitzer was towed by means of a Willys Jeep to the outskirts of Reggio Emilia, from where the Italian gunners initiated a shelling of the city that wrought panic among Axis troops. Believing that the arrival of Allied forces was imminent, the Germans and their fascist allies evacuated the city.
Following WWII The 75mm Howitzer saw continued use by the US, Britain, Japan, Turkey, Croatia, and China. While they were used in many military exploits, as well as for ceremonial purposes, they were also used for avalanche control at ski resorts in the Western US.