WWII M1A1 75mm Pack Howitzer on M8 Carriage

Number Produced: 4,939
Crew: 6 or more
Barrel Length: 4’6” (1.38 m)
Caliber: 2.95” (75 mm)
Rate of Fire: Up to 12 rounds per min.
Range: 9,600 yards (8,778 m)
Weight: 0.72 tons
Length: 12’1” (3.68 m)
Width: 4’0” (1.22 m)
Height: 3’1” (0.94 m)

Developed in the between-war years, the 75 mm Pack Howitzer met the needs for an artillery piece that was transportable across difficult terrain. Easily assembled and disassembled, it could be transported in 7 mule loads or 9 parachute loads, pulled fully assembled by a ¾ ton truck, or, likely to the chagrin of many Marines, by four men in emergency situations. Production for the 75 mm was underfunded until World War II broke out, at which point it became the second most common howitzer in the war. It saw service with the Army, especially airborne units, and the Marines until it was phased out for the 105 mm howitzer.

Did you know?
At close range, the M1A1 could be used as an anti-tank piece. Tanks usually tried to take guns head-on, where their armor was the strongest, so another gun needed to be in place facing the tank’s side so that it could puncture the weaker side armor.

Today, the M1A1 is still in use in the US, but as a form of avalanche control in ski areas.