I have a few quick questions mainly regarding the personal carried weapons of the Soldiers crewing self propelled tank destroyers in the US Army.
I was once told that the crew of a tank destroyer was referred to as a gun team and not a crew (as a crew of a tank was referred too) but while this makes sense to me I'm not sure if this is correct.
I've seen and heard that tank destroyer crews would carry M1 carbines for personal protection for some time I've thought that the driver would be armed with an SMG (mostly M3 from 1944 on) like most other US Army vehicles but it seems this is not the case.
Unfortunately they don't refer to any source.A .50 caliber (12.7 mm) Browning M2HB machine gun could be mounted on the top rear of the turret for use against enemy infantry and for anti-aircraft use, along with 300 rounds of ammunition stowed in 50-round boxes under the vehicle subfloor. The crew also had their personal weapons for self-defense. A Thompson submachine gun with 460 rounds of ammunition was stowed on brackets in the right rear of the turret for use by the vehicle commander. The other four crew members were armed with M1 carbines, each carrying as much ammunition on their person as they saw fit. An M1903 Springfield rifle with 60 rounds of ammunition was stowed next to the assistant driver, and an adapter for the rifle and ten M9 rifle grenades for use against tanks were stowed under the left front vehicle subfloor. Storage boxes in the turret held five Mk 2 grenade, five M18 smoke grenade, and two thermite grenades.
So it seems that the commander would've carried a Thompson while the rest (including the driver) would've carried M1 carbines. I've seen the interior of an M8 Greyhound once with the brackets to stow the carbine and scince the M8 was designed as a tank destroyer I figured it would be similar with the M10 and the other 2 tank destroyers used.
I also figured that the commander probably carried 3-5 20 round mags (with 30 round mags being not very aviable) for the Thompson and the rest of the ammo would be stored in boxes.
It seems so that on the M18.
This time wikipedia offers a very specific source TM 9-755, 1945, page 10.Each crew member was provided with an M1 carbine with 90 rounds for self-defense, and six Mk 2 grenades, six M50 white phosphorus smoke grenades, and six smoke pots were also carried in the vehicle.
The wikipedia description of the M36 is somewhat vague and just mentions that the crew had their personal weapons for protection.
Scince M18 and M36 entered service after the M10 the M10 had his combat debut in Tunisia in March 1943 so he arrived there in early 43 or late 42 while the M18 did not arrive in Eurpe until summer 1944 and the M36 not until autum 1944 my conclusion would be the M36 crews like M18 crews would entirely be armed with carbines.
My most important question now.
Did the M10 commander keep an SMG or was this as well switched to a carbine?
Did he keep a Thompson or did some receive M3s later?
I'm also interssted about the M1903 springfield. I know that the M7 grenade launcher for the rifle M1 became aviable late in the war. Infantry squads had a grenadier carrying an M1903 with an M1 greade launcher well into 1944. But by the time of D Day there where enough M7 aviable to re equip all the desigated grenadiers of the rifle squads (at least in NW Europe I'm not sure about italy) it seems to me however that M7s became aviable in high numbers scince by August 1944 most Infantry squads hat 2 grenade launchers assigend per and by October most had 3.
So this makes me thinking was the M1903 kept? Or was it replaced by an M1 with an M7 scince enough M1 and M7 where aviable?
With the M8 grenade launcher for the M1 Carbine aviable it also seems possible that the rifle was no longer necesarry scince the Carbine could do the same job? But I'm not entirley sure here scince the rifle blank might have more power and a higher velocity might be desireable when shooting at a moving target?
Thanks for all the answers in adance and kind regards.