American Weapons used in World War 2

By Jeff Kavanagh and Kyle Kusack

With all the advances in technology leading up world war 2 such as tanks and aircraft. The foot soldier still remained as one of the essencial elements for modern warfare. This was due to the fact that some jobs could only be done by an infantry sodiler and no matter how rich a nation was it would be impossible to equip every man with a tank or an aircraft.

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Browning Automatic Rifle ("B.A.R.")

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The BAR(M1918) is a heavy weapon that required spific training to use, usually one was trained per squad . it required 2 sodilers to operate one to fire and one to carry the heavy ammo. The BAR is gas operated .30 caliber rifle that that is air cooled. It is 47 inches long and weighed approximately 16 pounds. The BAR was a deadly weapon that can fire 450 shots per minute and is said to be one of the best weapons used by the U.S infantry during the war 2. It could be shot from the shoulder or hip on automatic or could be adjusted for semi automatic fire which was much more accurate .

M1911 Colt .45 Pistol

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The .45 Colt was the standard side-arm for all American soldiers and is still utilized by soldiers today. It has a kill range of about 50 yards (45 meters). The magazine holds seven rounds and soldiers would carry multiple magazines.

M1 Carbine

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American Solider holding the M1 Carbine

M1 carbine 1.JPEG The M1 Carbine is a .30 semi- automatic weapon shot from the sholder. It is gas operated with an accurate range of 200 yards (182 meters) .weighing only 5 pounds it was very light and maneuverable. A bayonet could also be attached for close combat fighting.

M1 Garand Rifle

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During WW2 the M1 was the the US infantrys standard weapon. its semi automatic holding 8 .30 callibar cartages. it is self loading and gas operated and was designed to be shot from the sholder. having a max range of 5500 yards (roughely 5 KM) made it deadly accurate at close proximity. Being 43 inches long and weighing onle 9 pounds made it a effective weapon that could be easily massproduced and distributed to millions of soldiers.

Thompson Submachine Gun ("Tommy Gun")

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The Thompson submachine gun was given the nickname the Tommy gun.

The Tommy gun was fully automatic firing a .45 caliber round. Weighing about 13 pounds with a magazine that could hold 30 rounds. Able to fire between 600 and 700 rounds per minute you could unload a full magazine of 30 rounds in only 3 seconds. It was very small compared to other automatic weapons being only 33 inches long and weighing only 12 pounds. In 1939 the cost for the government to make 1 Tommy gun was 209$ but by 1942 the price had reduced to only 70$making it more economical to mass produce. Although being less efficient and costlier that German submachine guns the Americans had the advantage of them being readily available for use


A mortar is a type of small cannon used for high angle fire. it looks just like a small metal tube. In ww2 light mortars (60mm) would be carried in a squad, the heavy mortars (81nmm) weren’t quite as portable as the light ones but were much more powerful. Motars were generally used against infantry, since they were not very effective against tanks or armored vehicles sine they were not very accurate. the light mortars used both a heavy and light explosive similar to an airplane bomb. The shells usually weighed 4 pounds depending what kind It was. A high explosive shell could be fire or a smoke shell. Mortars have an accurate range of roughly 2.5 KMs.

M2 flamethrower


The M2 wan a portable flamethrower that was worn like a backpack. It was the standard Flamethrower for the american during WW2. When empty the M2 weighed 43 pounds and when filled weighed 68 pounds. It was able to fire for up to 7 seconds straight or could be shot in several one second bursts. The effective spray range was 65.5 feet ehile inaccurate could spray up to 132 feet. The M2 consisted of 2 gasoline tanks vertically positioned with 1 nitrogen propellent tank set between them. This mixture was fed through a tubing line to the flame gun which was held just like any convential rifel. It was a very functual weapon with many practial uses. But later in the war with the arrival of flemethrowertanks there was no need for the M2 and it was declared obsolete at the tank provided greater protection and firepower.

Mk 2 grenade

Mk2.jpgThe Mk2 was a defensive gernade used by U.S infantry in WW2 it was made the standard in 1920 replacing the Mk1. Groves were carved into the castiron shell to help with fragmantation. This also helped with gripping the gernade when throwing. The Mk2’s appearance gave it the nicknam as the “pineapple “ gernade. During WW2 it was commonly filled with TNT