American Artillery, from 1775 to the Present Day
...new from Pen & Sword
Title: American Artillery, from 1775 to the Present Day
Author: Michael Green
Publisher: Pen & Sword
A new book from well known author Michael Green, this one is a 257-page hardback looking at the chronological history of artillery, with some historical background in the opening chapter, then moving on to the use of artillery by the US military from the time of the Mexican-American war, all the way through to the present day. A good mix of text to tell us about the various weapons, supported by a large number of photos to illustrate the various weapons throughout.
The subject is split across 6 chapters, starting with the Early Years, with early cast mortars, field and coastal weapons, from fighting Mexico and the Revolutionary War before getting to the next chapter, which looks at the Civil War and the battles and new tactics employed by North and South. Then we get to WW1, when artillery was used in huge types and numbers, including some purchased from abroad, such as the famous French 75mm. Heavy artillery and railway guns also feature in this section. Moving on to WW2 there is even more technological change, with self-propelled weapons, more anti-aircraft mounts and rockets. Next comes the Cold War, which saw many of those guns from WW2 still in service in both Korea and Vietnam, plus new ones, including missiles for tactical nuclear war, which thankfully were never used. This leaves the final chapter to consider the post Cold-War era, bringing us up to date.
As well as the details of individual weapons there are details of the changing organisations and tactics that have accompanied the changes in technology. It isn't just the successful designs that are included, but also plenty of designs that weren't adopted for an equal variety of reasons. Some of the weapons featured had short service lives while others have had very long ones. The one particular topic that has been left out for the sake of space, is anti-tank artillery. All the rest is here, and this should be a useful reference for modellers and wargamers as well as those simply interested in the history of artillery.
Thanks to Pen & Sword for our review copy.