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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

AA Gun - Mesopotamia. Wottizzit ?


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I have a photo from the AWM of an AA gun on a barge in Mesopotamia. I can't identify it. It appears to be some flavour of Hotchkiss but the mount doesn't match anything in Hogg & Thurston 1914-1918. The barrel looks a 12 pdr 12 cwt but lacks the recoil gear below the breech and doesn't look like 10 ft, although it is truncated.


Any suggestions ?



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The History of the RRA Anti-Aircraft Artillery states: "... both major rivers were navigable for shallow draft vessels for long distances and the Royal Navy provided a fleet of ships, crews and guns, including three 12-pounder QF on temporary AA shipboard mountings." It seems that these guns were additional to the OOB for Mespot for 1918.

The history records the arrival of the first AA section in Basra in July 1916. and says "At this stage the only AA defence forward of base came from the naval detachments on gunboats using their 12-pounders.

The units included in the OOB were AA Sections 59, 80, 92, 93, 208. Their equipment comprised 2 x 12-pounder, 4 x 13-pounder 6 cwt, 6 x 13-pounder 9 cwt, 10 x 1-pounder 'pom-poms'.

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  • 2 months later...

In the best Haig tradition I am blundering on until I sort this photograph out.

1. The gun barrel appears to be a 12 pdr 12 cwt.

2. Reports indicate there were several in Mesopotamia on barges at some time.

3. The mounting is like no other 12 pdr I've seen - all other pictures show recoil gear below the barrel, not above as here.

However - could they have simply inverted the gun and cradle on the pedestal mounting, possibly to increase elevation ? If so, it appears to be very close to what an upside-down 12 pdr 12 cwt might look like. Would this in fact work ? What about sights ? I don't see any sign of the electrical paraphenalia associated with firing 12 pounders - could they be using percussion adapters in the cartridge ?



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