The Book of the Garand is the definitive chronicle of the U.S. Rifle, Caliber .30, M1, also known as the M1 Garand. It was the first semi-automatic rifle generally issued to any infantry. General George S. Patton called it "the greatest battle implement ever devised" as it gave the U.S. a significant advantage in firepower over bolt-action single shot rifles used by the enemy in WWII. The Book of the Garand is Major General Julian S. Hatchers first-hand account of the U.S. War Departments search, testing, manufacturing and dissemination of the M1 Garand.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
Julian Sommerville Hatcher (June 26, 1888 December 4, 1963), was a noted firearms expert and author of the early twentieth century. He is credited with several technical books and articles relating to military firearms, ballistics, and autoloading weapons. His premier works are Hatcher's Notebook and Book of the Garand, along with Textbook of Pistols and Revolvers and Pistols and Revolvers and Their Uses. He was also a pioneer in the forensic identification of firearms and their ammunition. Hatcher retired from the United States Army as a Major General. Afterward, he served as Technical Editor of the National Rifle Association's American Rifleman magazine.
Hatcher was born in Hayfield, Virginia and graduated with honors from Annapolis in 1909 [he voluntarily transferred from the Navy to the Army's coast artillery]. He married Eleanor Dashiell and together, they had three children. Chief of the Small Arms Division in the Ordnance Department and the Assistant Commandant of the Ordnance School before and at the beginning of World War II, he worked closely with Springfield Armory as an engineering trouble-shooter in resolving early production issues associated with the early iterations of the M1 Garand Rifle.Review:
This is a must have for the US Military Arms collector. It goes into great detail about the development of what became the .30 caliber, US Rifle, M1, otherwise known as the M1 Garand. It is a fascinating behind the scenes journey telling what is involved in developing a new class of rifle. It emphasizes that there is a lot more to developing a rifle than merely putting the appropriate sized barrel onto a new receiver.
The book describes the use and abuse testing that goes into qualifying the rifle for use by the troops. It also mentions the many occasions when particular versions of a promising rifle were issued to the troops for actual field testing. The M1 Garand also underwent a grueling series of tests with three other rifles, the Johnson and Winchester semi-automatic rifles and the venerable Model of 1903 Springfield. All chambered the same 30'06 cartridge.
Chambering and surviving the pressures produced by the 30'06 cartridge was the major challenge to be overcome in developing a semi-automatic battle rifle within the size and weight constraints for the average infantryman. There had been semi-automatic rifles before the M1 Garand but they were primarily using lower pressure ammunition. Many semi-automatic rifle inventors submitted designs but they were either too heavy, fell apart during firing, or both. Many inventors submitted rifles with parts looking more at home in a typewriter than in battle-field ready rifle.
John C. Garand came from the machine tool design industry. He thought that he could do a better job than many of the current weapons designers. He designed his rifles with a primary focus on how the parts would be easily manufactured with the machine tools then available.
The book describes the path that he followed that led to his employment at the Federal Government's Springfield Armory [it was disbanded in about 1968 after a long history of service] designing what became the M1.
The M-1 Garand was adopted by the US Army in 1936. Springfield Armory began tooling up to produce the new rifle. Winchester Repeating Arms was also given an initial "educational order" for 65,000 M-1's so they could begin tooling up to produce the rifle. When World War II began for the United States on December 7th, 1941, there weren't enough Garands to equip even a fraction of the troops.
Consequently the Marines went ashore on Guadalcanal with M1903 Springfield rifles in August of 1942. When US Army infantrymen began arriving around November 1942 Marines began acquiring their M-1 Garands by trading booty, stealing or following Infantrymen of patrol so they could pickup their Garands if they were wounded or killed.
Hatcher describes this and far more in great detail. Far more than I can describe in a small review. It is a fascinating read.
At a macro level it shows how just a relatively small cadre of people can develop a completely new and innovative rifle. Contrast that with today's Pentagon where it takes many Generals to oversee and screwup the development of a new weapon [I spent more than 30 years in the Military-Government-Industrial complex and have first hand experience]. Contrast how the Pentagon develops new weapons with the development of Special Operations Command's 6.8mm SPC conversion for the M-16/AR-15/M-4 semi- and automatic rifles/carbines. Search the internet for "6.8 SPC" and read how top Generals are trying to kill it even though it is getting rave reviews from soldiers in the field. --Gregg D. Armstrong
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Book Description Canton Street Press, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 1934044253
Book Description Canton Street Press, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. reprint edition. 292 pages. 9.00x6.00x1.00 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # 1934044253