Thompson submachine gun
The Thompson submachine gun is an American submachine gun invented by John T. Thompson in 1918 which became infamous during the Prohibition era, being a signature weapon of various crime syndicates in the United States, it was a common sight in the media of the time, being used by both law enforcement officers and criminals. The Thompson submachine gun was known informally as the "Tommy Gun", "Annihilator", "Chicago Typewriter", "Chicago Submachine", "Chicago Piano", "Chicago Style", "Chicago Organ Grinder", "Trench Broom", "Trench Sweeper", "Drum Gun","The Chopper", "The Thompson"; the Thompson was favored by soldiers, police, FBI, civilians alike for its large.45 ACP cartridge and high volume of automatic fire. It has since gained popularity among civilian collectors for its historical significance, it has considerable significance in popular culture in works about the Prohibition era and World War II, is among the best-known firearms in history. The original automatic Thompsons are no longer produced, but numerous semi-automatic civilian versions are still being manufactured by Auto-Ordnance.
These retain a similar appearance to the original models, but they have various modifications in order to comply with US firearm laws. General John T. Thompson developed the Thompson Submachine Gun, he envisioned an "auto rifle" to replace the bolt action service rifles in use, but he came across a patent issued to John Bell Blish in 1915 while searching for a way to allow his weapon to operate safely without the complexity of a recoil or Gas-operated reloading mechanism. Blish's design was based on the adhesion of inclined metal surfaces under pressure. Thompson gained financial backing from Thomas F. Ryan and started the Auto-Ordnance Company in 1916 for the purpose of developing his "auto rifle", it was developed in Cleveland and the principal designers were Theodore H. Eickhoff, Oscar V. Payne, George E. Goll. By late 1917, the limits of the Blish Principle were discovered, it was found that the only cartridge in service, suitable for use with the lock was the.45 ACP round. Thompson envisioned a "one-man, hand-held machine gun" in.45 ACP as a "trench broom" for use in the ongoing trench warfare of World War I.
Payne drum magazines. The project was titled "Annihilator I", most of the design issues had been resolved by 1918. At an Auto-Ordnance board meeting in 1919 to discuss the marketing of the "Annihilator", with the war now over, the weapon was renamed the "Thompson Submachine Gun". While other weapons had been developed shortly prior with similar objectives in mind, the Thompson was the first weapon to be labeled and marketed as a "submachine gun". Thompson intended the weapon as an automatic "trench-broom" to sweep enemy troops from the trenches, filling a role for which the Browning Automatic Rifle had been proven ill-suited; this concept had been developed by German troops using their own Bergmann MP 18, the world's first submachine gun, in concert with Sturmtruppen tactics. The Thompson first entered production as the M1921, it was available to civilians. M1921 Thompsons were sold in small quantities to the United States Postal Inspection Service to protect the mail from a spate of robberies and to the United States Marine Corps.
Federal sales were followed by sales to several police departments in the US and minor international sales to various armies and constabulary forces, chiefly in Central and South America. The Marines used their Thompsons in China, it was popular as a point-defense weapon for countering ambush by Nicaraguan guerrillas, led to the organization of four-man fire teams with as much firepower as a nine-man rifle squad. The major complaints against the Thompson were its weight, inaccuracy at ranges over 50 yards, the lack of penetrating power of the.45 ACP pistol cartridge. Some of the first batches of Thompsons were bought in America by agents of the Irish Republic, notably Harry Boland; the first test of a Thompson in Ireland was performed by West Cork Brigade commander Tom Barry in presence of IRA leader Michael Collins. They purchased a total of 653, but US customs authorities in New York seized 495 of them in June 1921; the remainder made their way to the Irish Republican Army by way of Liverpool and were used in the last month of the Irish War of Independence.
After a truce with the British in July 1921, the IRA imported more Thompsons and used them in the subsequent Irish Civil War. They were not found to be effective in Ireland; the Thompson achieved most of its early notoriety in the hands of Prohibition and Great Depression-era gangsters, the lawmen who pursued them, in Hollywood films about their exploits, most notably in the St Valentine's Day Massacre. The two Thompson guns used in the massacre are still held by the Berrien County Sheriff's Department; the Thompson has been referred to by one researcher as the "gun that made the twenties roar". In 1926, the Cutts Compensator was offered as an option for the M1921. 21AC at the original price of $200, with the plain M1921 designated No. 21A at a reduced price of $175. In 1928, Federal Laboratories took over the dist
The Blish lock is a breech locking mechanism designed by John Bell Blish based upon his observation that under extreme pressures, certain dissimilar metals will resist movement with a force greater than normal friction laws would predict. In modern engineering terminology, it is an extreme manifestation of what is now called static friction, or stiction, his locking mechanism was used first in the Thompson submachine gun. The Blish lock resulted from John Blish's observation of large naval guns, he noticed that the breech blocks of naval guns with interrupted thread breeches remained closed when fired with full charges, but tended to unscrew when fired with light charges. He concluded that dissimilar metals have a tendency to adhere to each other when subjected to high pressure; this principle of metallic adhesion of dissimilar metals became known as the Blish principle. Blish put this knowledge to use in a delayed-blowback breech mechanism, he developed a working model that used a simple wedge as the delay mechanism, was assigned U.
S. Patent 1,131,319 on March 9, 1915. Despite the patent and production of the system on the Thompson submachine gun, the concept was of limited utility. Any amount of fouling or lubricant on the contacting surfaces would defeat the system; the most famous applications of the Blish Lock were the Thompson Autorifle and Thompson submachine gun. Several engineers suspected the autorifle functioned more as a delayed blowback than as an adhesion-locked breech action; some authorities, such as Julian Hatcher, felt the Blish lock as employed in the submachine gun did not accomplish much in terms of actual breech locking. In fact, the submachine gun was redesigned as a simple blowback weapon. Any real advantages to the system were far outweighed by the additional cost of manufacture associated with the device. In the Thompson submachine gun the H shaped bronze lock connects the bolt actuator to the bolt body; the Unofficial Tommy Gun Page Thompson Autorifle Model 1921
The Roaring Twenties refers to the decade of the 1920s in Western society and Western culture. It was a period of economic prosperity with a distinctive cultural edge in the United States and Western Europe in major cities such as Berlin, London, Los Angeles, New York City and Sydney. In France, the decade was known as the "années folles", emphasizing the era's social and cultural dynamism. Jazz blossomed, the flapper redefined the modern look for British and American women, Art Deco peaked. Not everything roared: in the wake of the hyper-emotional patriotism of World War I, Warren G. Harding "brought back normalcy" to the politics of the United States; this period saw the large-scale development and use of automobiles, movies and electrical appliances. Aviation became a business. Nations saw rapid industrial and economic growth, accelerated consumer demand, significant changes in lifestyle and culture; the media focused on celebrities sports heroes and movie stars, as cities rooted for their home teams and filled the new palatial cinemas and gigantic sports stadiums.
In most major democratic states, women won the right to vote. The right to vote made a huge impact on society; the social and cultural features known as the Roaring Twenties began in leading metropolitan centers and spread in the aftermath of World War I. The United States gained dominance in world finance. Thus, when Germany could no longer afford to pay World War I reparations to the United Kingdom and the other Allied powers, the United States came up with the Dawes Plan, named after banker, 30th Vice President Charles G. Dawes. Wall Street invested in Germany, which paid its reparations to countries that, in turn, used the dollars to pay off their war debts to Washington. By the middle of the decade, prosperity was widespread, with the second half of the decade known in Germany, as the "Golden Twenties"; the spirit of the Roaring Twenties was marked by a general feeling of novelty associated with modernity and a break with tradition. Everything seemed to be feasible through modern technology.
New technologies automobiles, moving pictures, radio, brought "modernity" to a large part of the population. Formal decorative frills were shed in favor of practicality in architecture. At the same time and dancing rose in popularity, in opposition to the mood of World War I; as such, the period is referred to as the Jazz Age. The Wall Street Crash of 1929 ended the era, as the Great Depression brought years of hardship worldwide; the Roaring Twenties was a decade of economic growth and widespread prosperity, driven by recovery from wartime devastation and deferred spending, a boom in construction, the rapid growth of consumer goods such as automobiles and electricity in North America and Western Europe and a few other developed countries such as Australia. The economy of the United States, which had transitioned from a wartime economy to a peacetime economy and provided loans for a European boom as well; some sectors stagnated farming and coal mining. The US became the richest country in the world per capita and since the late-19th century had been the largest in total GDP.
Its industry was based on mass production, its society acculturated into consumerism. European economies, by contrast, had a more difficult postwar readjustment and did not begin to flourish until about 1924. At first, the end of wartime production caused a brief but deep recession, the post–World War I recession of 1919–20. However, the economies of the U. S. and Canada rebounded as returning soldiers re-entered the labor force and munitions factories were retooled to produce consumer goods. Mass production made technology affordable to the middle class; the automotive industry, the film industry, the radio industry, the chemical industry took off during the 1920s. Of chief importance was the automotive industry. Before the war, cars were a luxury good. In the 1920s, mass-produced vehicles became commonplace in the Canada. By 1927, the Ford Motor Company discontinued the Ford Model T after selling 15 million units of that model, it had been in continuous production from October 1908 to May 1927.
The company planned to replace the old model with a newer one, the Ford Model A. The decision was a reaction to competition. Due to the commercial success of the Model T, Ford had dominated the automotive market from the mid-1910s to the early-1920s. In the mid-1920s, Ford's dominance eroded as its competitors had caught up with Ford's mass production system, they began to surpass Ford in some areas, offering models with more powerful engines, new convenience features, styling. Only about 300,000 vehicles were registered in 1918 in all of Canada, but by 1929, there were 1.9 million, automobile parts were being manufactured in Ontario, near Detroit, Michigan. The automotive industry's influence on other segments of the economy were widespread, jump starting industries such as steel production, highway building, service stations, car dealerships, new housing outside the urban core. Ford opened factories around the world and proved a strong competitor in most markets for its low-cost, easy-maintenance vehicles.
General Motors, to a lesser degree, followed. European competitors avoided the low-price market and concentrated on more expensive vehicles for upscale consumers. Radio became the first mass broadcasting medium. Radios were expensive. Radio advertising became a platform for mass marketing, its economic importance led to the mass culture. During the "Golden Age of Radio", radio programming was as varied as
Ordnance Corps (United States Army)
The United States Army Ordnance Corps the United States Army Ordnance Department, is a Sustainment branch of the United States Army, headquartered at Fort Lee, Virginia. The broad mission of the Ordnance Corps is to supply Army combat units with weapons and ammunition, including at times their procurement and maintenance. Along with the Quartermaster Corps and Transportation Corps, it forms a critical component of the U. S. Army logistics system; the U. S. Army Ordnance Corps mission is to support the development, production and sustainment of weapon systems, missiles and ground mobility materiel during peace and war to provide combat power to the U. S. Army; the officer in charge of the branch for doctrine and professional development purposes is the Chief of Ordnance. The current Chief of Ordnance is Brigadier General Heidi J. Hoyle. During the colonial era in America, each colony was responsible for its own supply of ordnance materiel and its own personnel to supervise it; the first written record of an ordnance officer in British colonial America was Samuel Sharpe in the Massachusetts Bay Colony appointed in 1629 as Master Gunner of Ordnance.
By 1645, the Massachusetts Bay Colony had a permanent Surveyor of Ordnance officer. By the time of the American Revolution, every colony had their own ordnance organization responsible for the procurement, supply and maintenance of munitions for the colony. In July 1775, Ezekiel Cheever was appointed by General George Washington as Commissary of Artillery Stores, soon to be called Commissary of Military Stores with Major General Henry Knox, the Chief of Artillery, he was the civilian in charge of ordnance support for Washington's army in the field. By the end of the American Revolution, every brigade had ordnance personnel civilian, providing munitions support to the soldiers in the field. In 1776, the Board of War and Ordnance was established to oversee the conduct of the war; this board selected Benjamin Flower to be the Commissary General of Military Stores. Benjamin Flower was given the rank of Colonel and served in that capacity throughout the American Revolution; the Commissary General of Military Stores was an echelon above the Commissary of Military Stores in the field.
His responsibility was to recruit and train artificers, establish ordnance facilities, to distribute arms and ammunition to the army in the field. In 1777, a powder magazine was established at Carlisle, Pennsylvania and a foundry at Springfield, Massachusetts. In the early years of the 19th Century, the Ordnance profession played a key role in the burgeoning Industrial Revolution in America. In 1794, President Washington established the two federal armories. At these locations, early developments and innovations striving towards interchangeable parts were achieved. Inventors such as Thomas Blanchard, Simeon North, John Hall, Eli Whitney would perfect the methods and means for mass production. Growing out of the technical innovations of the arms industry, these methods would be adopted by American industry by the middle of the 19th Century, establishing what has become known as the American System of Manufacturing. On 14 May 1812, as part of the preparation for the War of 1812, Congress established the Ordnance Department.
It was responsible for arms and ammunition production, acquisition and storage or ordnance materiel for the U. S. Army; the act created a new position, the Commissary General of Ordnance. Colonel Decius Wadsworth, former Superintendent of the U. S. Military Academy at West Point, was chosen as the Commissary General of Ordnance; the act directed the new Commissary General of Ordnance, soon renamed to Chief of Ordnance, to "enlist artisans and laborers to direct the inspection and proof of all cannon and small arms to direct the construction of gun carriages equipments implements and ammunition to make estimates and contracts for and purchases of ordnance supplies and stores and to issue them to the army to exact from armories and arsenals quarterly returns of property and to receive from all responsible officers reports of damages to ordnance materiel to establish ordnance depots to prepare regulations for the government of the Ordnance Department and forms of returns and reports". Wadsworth took great care in establishing and supervising the training of officers who would join the Ordnance Department.
Coming from West Point, these officers, such as Alfred Mordecai and George Bomford, were trained in mechanical and chemical engineering and were among the highest ranking of graduating cadets from West Point. These new Ordnance officers were detailed to the Springfield or Harpers Ferry Armory, or to one of the various arsenals across the growing country, to conduct scientific and industrial experiments in metallurgy, chemistry, or one of the allied engineering fields. In 1832, the Ordnance Department established the Non-Commissioned Officer rank of Ordnance Sergeant to be in charge of the Ordnance stores at any of the growing number of army forts and establishments across the country; this rank will remain until the reorganization of the Army under the National Defense Act of 1920. During the Mexican War, the Ordnance Department established the Ordnance Rocket and Howitzer Battery to service the new M1841 12-pound howitzers and Hale war rockets, which had not yet entered Army service and were still being tested.
This was the only Ordnance unit established for a combat role. This unit included junior Army officers. During the war, the Ordnance Department furnished 90 million pounds of lead, 13 million pounds of artillery proje
The M1 Garand is a.30-06 caliber semi-automatic rifle, the standard U. S. service rifle during World War II and the Korean War and saw limited service during the Vietnam War. Most M1 rifles were issued to U. S. forces, though many hundreds of thousands were provided as foreign aid to American allies. The Garand is still used by military honor guards, it is widely used by civilians for hunting, target shooting, as a military collectible. The M1 rifle was named after John Garand, it was the first standard-issue semi-automatic military rifle. By all accounts the M1 rifle served with distinction. General George S. Patton called it "the greatest battle implement devised"; the M1 replaced the bolt action M1903 Springfield as the standard U. S. service rifle in the mid 1930s, was itself replaced by the selective fire M14 rifle in the late 1950s. Although the name "Garand" is pronounced, the preferred pronunciation is, according to experts and people who knew John Garand, the weapon's designer. Referred to as the "Garand" or "M1 Garand" by civilians, its official designation when it was the issue rifle in the U.
S. Army and the U. S. Marine Corps was "U. S. Rifle, Caliber.30, M1" or just "M1" and Garand was not mentioned. French Canadian-born Garand went to work at the United States Army's Springfield Armory and began working on a.30 caliber primer actuated blowback Model 1919 prototype. In 1924, twenty-four rifles, identified as "M1922s", were built at Springfield. At Fort Benning during 1925, they were tested against models by Berthier, Hatcher-Bang and Pedersen, the latter two being delayed blowback types; this led to a further trial of an improved "M1924" Garand against the Thompson producing an inconclusive report. As a result, the Ordnance Board ordered a.30-06 Garand variant. In March 1927, the cavalry board reported trials among the Thompson, 03 Springfield had not led to a clear winner; this led to a gas-operated.276 model. In early 1928, both the infantry and cavalry boards ran trials with the.276 Pedersen T1 rifle, calling it "highly promising". On 13 August 1928, a semiautomatic rifle board carried out joint Army and Marine Corps trials between the.30 Thompson, both cavalry and infantry versions of the T1 Pedersen, "M1924" Garand, and.256 Bang, on 21 September, the board reported no clear winner.
The.30 Garand, was dropped in favor of the.276. Further tests by the SRB in July 1929, which included rifle designs by Browning, Colt–Browning, Holek, Rheinmetall, an incomplete one by White, led to a recommendation that work on the.30 gas-operated Garand be resumed, a T1E1 was ordered 14 November 1929. Twenty gas-operated.276 T3E2 Garands were made and competed with T1 Pedersen rifles in early 1931. The.276 Garand was the clear winner of these trials. The.30 caliber Garand was tested, in the form of a single T1E1, but was withdrawn with a cracked bolt on 9 October 1931. A 4 January 1932 meeting recommended adoption of the.276 caliber and production of 125 T3E2s. Meanwhile, Garand redesigned his improved T1E2 rifle was retested; the day after the successful conclusion of this test, Army Chief of Staff General Douglas MacArthur disapproved any caliber change, in part because there were extensive existing stocks of.30 M1 ball ammunition. On 25 February 1932, Adjutant General John B. Shuman, speaking for the Secretary of War, ordered work on the rifles and ammunition in.276 caliber cease and and all resources be directed toward identification and correction of deficiencies in the Garand.30 caliber.
On 3 August 1933, the T1E2 became the "semi-automatic rifle, caliber 30, M1". In May 1934, 75 M1s went to field trials. Numerous problems were reported, forcing the rifle to be modified, yet again, before it could be recommended for service and cleared for procurement on 7 November 1935 standardized 9 January 1936; the first production model was proof-fired, function-fired, fired for accuracy on July 21, 1937. Production difficulties delayed deliveries to the Army until September 1937. Machine production began at Springfield Armory that month at a rate of ten rifles per day, reached an output of 100 per day within two years. Despite going into production status, design issues were not at an end; the barrel, gas cylinder, front sight assembly were redesigned and entered production in early 1940. Existing "gas-trap" rifles were recalled and retrofitted, mirroring problems with the earlier M1903 Springfield rifle that had to be recalled and reworked three years into production and foreshadowing rework of the M16 rifle at a similar point in its development.
Production of the Garand increased in 1940 despite these difficulties, reaching 600 a day by 10 January 1941, the Army was equipped by the end of 1941. Following the outbreak of World War II in Europe, Winchester was awarded an "educational" production contract for 65,000 rifles, with deliveries beginning in 1943; the M1 Garand was made in large numbers during World War II. They were used by every branch of the United States military. By all accounts the M1 rifle served with distinction. General George S. Patton called it "the greatest battle implement devised." The impact of faster-firing infantry small arms in general soon stimulated both Allied and Axis forces to increase their issue of semi- and automatic firearms in production, as well as to develop new types of infantry fir
John Bell Blish
John Bell Blish was an American inventor known for developing the Blish lock, used in the Thompson submachine gun. Blish licensed the patent for his lock to the Auto-Ordnance Corporation in 1915 in return for company stock. Blish was a career United States naval officer, serving as executive officer on the U. S. warships Vicksburg during the Spanish -- American War. He retired from the United States Navy with the rank of Commander in 1919. Blish was buried at Arlington National Cemetery; the USS John Blish, a survey ship commissioned during World War II, was named after him. Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships: John Blish Genealogical and Historical Page for John Bell Blish The Unofficial Tommy Gun Page