Friday, May 14, 2010

If a gun could talk...

...this one would sound like the Tower of Babel.

It's a Russian 1905/10 Maxim that was captured by the Jerries early in the '14-'18 war and issued to the machinegun troops of Grenadier Regiment 211. And then...
Later in WW1 this Machine Gun ended up in Turkey, perhaps as Imperial German aid during the conflict and was subsequently recaptured by the Russians before the close of the war. The Gun then, presumably with the Turkish mount was then captured by the Finns in the Winter War with the Soviets of 1939/40 as evidenced by the Finnish Arsenal and inventory date added in 1943. The Finnish Army later sold the weapon as surplus to IMA in 1996.

And here I thought my Remington-made Russian contract Finnish-issue Mosin-Nagant '91 had collected some stamps in its passport.

9 comments:

John A said...

There must be a museum somewhere that would love to display this and its history.

The Jack said...

Oh wow.

Now that's some history.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Holy...

tanksoldier said...

The gun survived all that, and then someone rendered it non-functional so they could sell it more easily.

Blasphemy.

Ed Foster said...

Not quite in the same class, but I sold a nice clean CZ24 Mauser with Czech crest on it, that was sold to the Nationalist Chinese army, as evidenced by all the nice Chinese characters on the left side of the butt.

It was then captured by the Japanese and issued to puppet Manchurian troops, as evidenced by the Japanese writing on the outboard side of the stock.

It must have pulled a lot of guard duty or have spent most of it's time warming an armory rack, because it was virtually unfired.

Doing some research on the weapon, I found it cynically amusing that the Germans continued to ship Mausers to Chang Kai Shek for a year after their Japanese allies requested them to stop. Chang paid in gold you see.

Then there was Karolynia Grik's very Polish grandfather, Jaji Gryk. He was drafted by the Russians to fight the Japanese in 1905, got captured, and chose to accept repatriation to Canada rather than go back.

In the First World War he served with Haller's Polish Brigade fighting the Germans in France. After the armistice, rather than being sent home to Canada, he was shipped to Russia to fight the Bolsheviks.

He saw Vancover twice from the deck of a returning troopship, 15 years apart. If the old boy was still alive, he would appreciate the humor in the machine gun and rifle.

Ed Foster said...

The Remington Moisins are fairly common here in Connecticut (where they were made), because most of them never shipped out to Russia.

They kept them here after the Czar's government fell, and used them to train The Connecticut National Guard and to arm the Home Guard and railroad police.

After the war,the Guardsmen were allowed to keep them, and the rest were sold off at $1.50 each. I've seen several in unfired condition that had spent most of a century over someone's fireplace.

The museum grade Moisins with the Remington or Westinghouse markings were going for a buck and a quarter to a buck and a half 8 or 9years ago.

If I offered Rodney Wells anything less than $700 for the creampuff he has hanging over next to the Lee-Enfields now, he'd die laughing.

Nick said...

tanksoldier, I think the blame really falls on some Washington pencil pushers who decided that the gun was so inherently dangerous, on account of it not being in the US by 68 or in civilian hands by 86, that it needed to be demilled, presumably for the children or some shit. But I agree, blasphemy of the highest order.

Lewis said...

And in the background I can hear Johnny Cash singing "I've been everywhere, man, I've been everywhere."

Old Grouch said...

Blasphemy.

Yep. Just like that regulation that requires you to strip the ivory keycaps off historic pianos before you can import one, so we can save the elephants or something...