Machine Guns

By: Dewar, Bo, Maria, and Noelle

The 1st Machine Gun

Machine guns played a important role in World War I. Hiram Maxim introduced the machine gun in 1884 it was not very popular then, but by 1914 it was used by the entire world.

The operation of the machine gun required it would be positioned on a tripod which would require a team of 4 to 6 men to operate the gun. The machine could fire 400-600 small-caliber rounds per minute. Machine guns would overheat and would cause the gun to stop working. That was when the water jacket that would be placed on the gun cooling down.

The British army rejected Maxim's gun. They saw no real use for a oil-cooled machine guns. However the German army mass produced a version of Maxim's gun the Maschinengeweher 08. By the time the war stared the German army had 12,00 MG-08 and witch grew to 100,000 machine guns. The British and France armies only had a couple hundred machine guns by the time war stared. " In front of us was not a line but a fortress position, 20 miles deep, in trenched and fortified, defended by masses of machine gun posts and thousands of guns in a wide arc. No chance for calvary." Phillip Gibbs.

The design of the machine guns was a simple concept. The powder in the machine guns creates an explosion witch then makes a jumping back motion, witch meant to internal power was needed to shoot the machine gun. The Germans realized the importance of machine guns and quickly used them on the battlefield. On the other hand the British didn't create their machine gun corps until October 1915.

The machine gun was used as a offensive weapon and a defensive weapon. They could be used as a offensive weapon because they would be planted on trucks, tanks, and armored vehicles. This allowed the army to charge and shoot at same time while traveling at hight speeds. They could be used as a defensive weapon because when a group of men were charging they operator could press the handle and shoot every solider down with the 400-600 rounds per minute, that could cause a lot of damage.

Overall the machine guns played a huge role in World War 1! Throughout World War 1, the machine gun was accountable for approximately 85% of the total solders deaths on the battle field. The machine gun was and is one of (if not the most) deadliest weapons on the battlefield.

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