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Regimental Cannon Company

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#1 36thID



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Posted 26 December 2008 - 03:14 PM

My uncle was KIA while serving with the 36th ID, 141st Regiment, Cannon Co.

I'm lacking a practical knowledge of military tactics and I'd like to know how the Cannon Companies were utilized in battle. I've read that they supported the front line riflemen but how did that work in the mountains of Italy ? Also, were they directed by Regimental Artillery or Headquarters Company ?

I have many photos of him and his fellow soldiers around their halftrack, with what I think is a 75 cannon. Photo was from the Louisiana Manuvers, Ft. Benning or Ft. Blanding.

Thanks To All,


#2 Slipdigit


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Posted 26 December 2008 - 06:43 PM

The cannon company provided indirect fire under the direction of the Regiment instead of the Division or higher. In essense, they were regimental artillery, excluding 81 & 60mm mortars that were carried lower in the Org chart.

Each regiment (3) of an infantry divison had a cannon company that fired 6 short barreled 105mm towed howitzers and the commander of the regiment could use these weapons at his discrection instead of having to go through Division to call in Divisional fire missions or higher up to get fire from Corps-level artillery.

Before and early in the war, 75mm guns were used instead of the 105mm.

These weapons were obviously closer to the sharp end of the sword than divisional or corp artillery and it wasn't uncommon for these men to find themselves fighting as infantry.

Edited by SlipdigitBK, 26 December 2008 - 06:52 PM.

Best Regards,  
JW :slipdigit:


#3 A-58


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Posted 28 November 2014 - 12:57 AM

These weapons were obviously closer to the sharp end of the sword than divisional or corp artillery and it wasn't uncommon for these men to find themselves fighting as infantry.


I've read that the men that manned the guns in these regimental cannon companies were classified as infantrymen and not artillerymen.  And that's why their units were platoons and companies, sections and batteries as in the field artillery.  I was never sure why such units ever existed, but it seems that their main reason was to provide direct/indirect fire to the regiments, and secondarily to support divarty in larger fire missions.  

"On the Plains of Hesitation, lies the blackened bones of countless millions who,
at the dawn of victory sat down to rest, and resting died"....

(Adlai Stevenson to Harry Truman on discussing the pros and cons of dropping the big one, or so I'm told)

#4 Sheldrake



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Posted 28 November 2014 - 01:12 AM

where was he killed and buried?  This might help us to unlock what he did until his death  

#5 harolds



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Posted 28 November 2014 - 04:11 PM

The cannon in question was the "Howitzer 105mm M3". It  fired the same ammo as the regular M2A2 Howitzer except because of its lighter weight it couldn't use the top two charges-only charges 1-5. Thus, the range was only 7250yds instead of the M2's 12,205. All this according to Ian Hogg who also states that the cannon companies were disbanded late in the war due to manpower shortages. However, he provided a picture of such a howitzer being used during the Ardennes battle.


The Germans also used infantry guns all during the war. Each infantry regiment was supposed to have six 75mm howitzers and two 150mm SIg 33.  They also provided their airborne units 75mm and 105mm recoiless rifles for infantry guns.


Instead of guns, the Soviets used 120mm mortars-which the Germans copied and put into their heavy mortar bns.


Japan used a 70mm and 75mm infantry gun.

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