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Thread: Johnson Rifle

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    Default Johnson Rifle

    Melvin Johnson (1909-1965) was the maker of several military weapons, AR10, AR15, M16, etc. Captain Johnson's first (?) rifle (Johnson Rifle) was not accepted by the military, the M1 was. When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Captain Johnson was in the Marines. I never met him, but I've always thought of him as a helluva guy.

    I DID know a fellow who lived next door, who was a Marine Corps Paratrooper, and he told me when he and his buddies were at Guadalcanal all they had were WW1 era bolt action 5 round rifles. Don told me the Marines stole several Mi's, which were not given to Marines (at that time). When I was around 10 years old (I'm 73 now) Don told me the Japanese were formidable soldiers, and would come at them at night. The Marines were taking casualties, but they knew the Japs would attack when they heard the MI make noise when the magazine flew up. Captain Johnson brought his marines 300 (?) Johnson Rifles.

    The Johnson could be kept fully loaded (10 rounds) at all times, the M1 held 8 rounds, and made a loud noise when the magazine flew up.

    When the Japanese attacked at night, the noisy MI mag flew up. That's what the Japs had been listening for. The Marines used the Johnson rifles and slaughtered the Japanese. The Marines were not allowed to keep the Johnson rifles. Don was furious......................................The Johnson had flaws, (The stock tended to crack) but was still a wonderful weapon. I knew when i was a kid I had to have 1 (5 is better).
    Last edited by sepp44; 26th November 2017 at 04:58 PM.

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