Pom-Poms at Gallipoli

Discussions on the final era of the Ottoman Empire, from the Young Turk Revolution of 1908 until the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923.
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drewsart
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Pom-Poms at Gallipoli

Post by drewsart » 02 Jan 2007 23:55

Hi there

I was wondering if anybody had information on the deployment of pom-poms at Gallipoli by the Turks.

I have read several references to them in contemporary texts, including one reference to a Pom Pom being captured early at ANZAC cove on the first day but to date I have not been able to find any reference to them within official OOB's

Any help will be great on this one

Andrew
Last edited by drewsart on 03 Jan 2007 00:21, edited 2 times in total.

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Bill Woerlee
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Post by Bill Woerlee » 03 Jan 2007 00:08

Andrew

As far as I know, the Pom Poms were deployed on the Gallipoli Peninsular at the same time as the Frog Frogs, Oz Ozs and Kiwi Kiwis. Mate, you really must get over this stutter. ;)

Bill

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drewsart
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Post by drewsart » 03 Jan 2007 00:18

Hi Bill

Happy new year to you.

Well answered and phrased that did give me a chuckle. My spelling of this weapon is wrong it should read pom-pom. It was an antiquated colonial weapon used on some fronts in addition to regular armaments see description below:

“The first gun to be called a pom-pom was the 37 mm Nordenfelt-Maxim introduced during the Second Boer War, the smallest artillery piece of that war. It fired a shell one pound in weight accurately over a distance of 3,000 yards. The barrel was water cooled and the shells were belt-fed from a 25 round fabric belt. The Boers used them against the British, who, seeing their utility, had the design copied by Vickers, who were already producing Maxim guns, and used them as well as them..

In World War I it was used against aircraft in the trenches of the Western Front. It was common British practice at this time to refer to artillery by the weight of the projectile rather than the bore of the barrel, e.g a 3-pounder gun had a calibre of 47 mm, a 6-pounder was 57 mm etc.

The first naval pom-pom was the QF 1.5-pdr Mark I, a piece with a calibre of 37 mm (1.46 in) and a barrel 43 calibres long. This was trialed in the Arethusa class light cruisers HMS Arethusa and Undaunted, but was did not enter full service, replaced instead by a larger weapon, the QF 2-pdr Mark II”

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QF_2_pounder_naval_gun

Andrew

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Bill Woerlee
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Post by Bill Woerlee » 03 Jan 2007 07:20

Andrew

G'day mate

I think you might find that the only place the pom-pom was used occured at W Beach. I have put the relevant paragraph from the Despatch of Vice-Admiral John de Robeck, commanding the fleet operations at Gallipoli which was printed in the Second Supplement to the London Gazette of 13 August 1915.
Landing at "W" Beach.—The 1st Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers embarked in " Euryalus " and " Implacable " on the 24th, who proceeded to positions off the landing place, where the troops embarked in the boats at about 4 a.m. Shortly after 5 a.m. "Euryalus" approached "W" beach and " Implacable " " X " beach. At 5 a.m. the covering ships opened a heavy fire on the beach, which was continued up to the last moment before landing. Unfortunately this fire did not have the effect on the extensive wire entanglements and trenches that had been hoped for, and the troops, on landing at 6 a.m., were met with a very heavy fire from rifles, machine guns, and pom-poms, and found the obstructions on the beach undamaged. The formation of this beach lends itself admirably to the defence, the landing-place being commanded by sloping cliffs offering ideal positions for trenches and giving a perfect field of fire. The only weakness in the enemy's position was on the flanks, where it was just possible to land on the rocks and thus enfilade the more important defences. This landing on the rocks was effected with great skill, and some maxims, cleverly concealed in the cliffs and which completely enfiladed the main beach, were rushed with the bayonet. This assisted to a great extent in the success of the landing, the troops, though losing very heavily, were not to be denied and the beach and the approaches to it were soon in our possession The importance of this success cannot be overestimated; " W " and " V " beaches were the only two of any size, in this area, on which troops, other than infantry, could be disembarked, and failure to capture this one might have had serious consequences as the landing at " V " was held up. The beach was being continuously sniped, and a fierce infantry battle was carried on round it throughout the entire day and the following night. It is impossible to exalt too highly the service rendered by the 1st Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers in the storming of the beach; the dash and gallantry displayed were superb. Not one whit behind in devotion to duty was the work of the beach personnel, who worked untiringly throughout the day and night, landing troops and stores under continual sniping. The losses due to rifle and machine-gun fire sustained by the boats' crews, to which they had not the satisfaction of being able to reply, bear testimony to the arduous nature of the service. During the night of the 25th-26th enemy attacked continuously, and it was not till 1 p.m. on the 26th, when " V '"beach was captured,that our position might be said to be secure. The work of landing troops, guns, and stores continued throughout this period and the conduct of all concerned left nothing to be desired.
Again, Hamilton mentions them at Sedd-el-Bahr in the first Despatch of General Sir Ian Hamilton, Commander in Chief of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, printed in the Third Supplement to the London Gazette of 6 July 1915.
Above the upper entanglement the ground was scored with the enemy's trenches, in one of which four pom-poms were emplaced; in others were dummy pom-poms to draw fire, while the debris of the shattered buildings on either flank afforded cover and concealment for a number of machine guns, which brought a cross-fire to bear on the ground already swept by rifle fire from the ridge. Needless to say, the difficulties in the way of previous reconnaissance had rendered it impossible to obtain detailed information with regard either to the locality or to the enemy's preparations.
The gun used was the 3.7-cm Maschinen flak, usually called the "flaming onion" gun, so called because tracer was used for sighting. The gun was a license-built Vickers pom-pom, essentially a heavy-weight Maxim machine gun produced as a 1.5-pdr (37-mm) and 2-pdr (40-mm). Guns of this kind served as anti aircraft guns on various Allied naval ships. It had an effective slant range of about 3km for aimed fire with a fire rate about 300 rounds per minute. The guns were never considered reliable since the fabric ammunition belts did not handle the larger cartridges and jammed often and after only a few shots. That is why they were employed by the Turks in a static defensive role which required clean conditions and good maintenance.

Hope this helps.

Cheers

Bill
Last edited by Bill Woerlee on 03 Jan 2007 07:53, edited 1 time in total.

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drewsart
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Excellent information Bill

Post by drewsart » 03 Jan 2007 07:32

I will have a look over the next few days at my resource material as I have a quote that one was also captured at ANZAC very early on in the landing - if I can find it i will post the relevant section.

I appreciate the information you have added this is excellent

Andrew

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Heres a photo af a Nordenfelt Gun

Post by StuartJohnsonAU » 21 Mar 2007 13:38

Here's a picture of a Nordenfelt Gun captured from the Turks.

The sign attached shows it was captured on April 25 1915 by the 2nd Batallion Royal Fusiliers

It is housed with other famous captured guns in the Tower of London. I didn't buy the guide book but I'm sure all of the captured guns have they're history well documented if you contact the Tower authorities.

Yes that my boy playing with the weapon.

Stuart


[/img]

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Post by StuartJohnsonAU » 21 Mar 2007 13:46

oops try again
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

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drewsart
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Post by drewsart » 22 Mar 2007 05:39

Hi Stuart

Thanks for sharing the photos with us

Andrew

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Bill Woerlee
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Post by Bill Woerlee » 22 Mar 2007 06:11

Stuart

G'day mate

I fully endorse Andrew's comment.

One thing that shocks me though, you look an awful lot younger than I would have guessed from your comments. Perhaps you have matured very quickly and are a sevant. :)

Cheers

Bill

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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 22 Mar 2007 11:24

The 2nd Batallion Royal Fusiliers were at X Beach?

A discussion here states that "my Turkish sources mention that 2 Nordenfelt(25mm) guns were used against the Anzacs in the first day of the landing,and the other two of the guns were used in Helles.."

http://www.lostgeneration1418.com/forum ... #entry9114


The Gaba Tepe strongpoint at Anzac was wired in with Mountain guns,MGs.Might it had had a Nordenfelt or two as well?Or was the MG fire encountered at Fisherman's Hut from a pom pom?

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drewsart
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Post by drewsart » 22 Mar 2007 23:24

Good morning Peter

Thanks for the confirmation that I am not going mad over this one and the link - I have read in one of my sources of the existence of these pom-pom's being used at ANZAC, and I could have sworn I read an account of one being over run early on the first day, 25th April by ANZAC troops.

But for the life of me do you think I can find that source ....... :(, usually I make a notation, but for what ever reason I didn’t and now I am frustrated as I know I have read it.

again thanks for the link and the reassurance I am not going crazy

Andrew

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Post by Peter H » 17 Apr 2007 10:15

Erickson relates in his Defeat in Detail that in 1912 the fortress zone of Yanya(now Ioannina in Greece)had 30 Nordenfeldt heavy machine guns included in its fixed defences,19 at one fort,Bijan.This suggests that such weapons were used in fixed positions and not easily moved.It also suggests that Ottoman stocks of these guns,at least before 1913,were considerable.

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Post by Peter H » 27 Apr 2007 14:25

Adrianople in 1912 also had 10 Nordenfeldt heavy machine guns as part of its fortress defences.

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