This M52 (155mm) Towed Howitzer was the standard heavy field gun for the United [S]tates during World War II. During World War I the United States was poorly equipped with heavy artillery. To address this issue, the U.S. Army developed several prototypes in the 1920s and 1930s. However, due to lack of government funding, it was not until 1938 that the M1 was adopted for military service. After several changes, the M2 version seen here (serial NO.3217) saw widespread action in both the European and Pacific theater[s] of operations. It served or was attached to each division during World War II and during the war the howitzer received the nickname "Long Tom". It also came in an 8-inch (203mm) version which had a heavier barrel.
The howitzer is a general purpose field artillery weapon used to provide indirect fire support to ground units. It could fire forty rounds per hour at the maximum rate. After World War II the U.S. Army re-organized and the gun was re-designated as the M59 in the military inventory. The M59 saw service both in Korea and Vietnam. Its primary mission during post WWII era was to serve in various corps level and division artillery units known as DIVARTY. This artillery piece served with the Pennsylvania Army National Guard's 28th DIVARTY unit based in Hershey, Pennsylvania.
Entered Service: 1938 (M1), 1941
(M1A1), 1945 (M2)
Manufacturer: Rock Island Arsenal & other arsenals
Weight 30,600 pounds
Length: 13.71 Meters (44.98 feet)
Width: 2.43 Meters (7.97 feet)
Height: 3.04 Meters (9.97 feet)
Firing Range: 23,700 Meters (14.7 miles)
Weapon System: It has no defensive weapons except for the crew's individual assigned weapons.