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BOY, I've NEVER seen one of these……..
Figured i would share
i believe 1 of 15 known to exist. side mag fed of 20 round clips of 30-06
1941 i think
AMAZING FIREARM & looks like todays SAW…….
even more rarer than the gun was the 12 magazine back pack. This gun breaks down for paratroopers.
 

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Interesting. Thanks for the pics.

Coincidentally, last night I was watching "The Devil's Brigade" with William Holden. Looking up some info on the real deal, Wikipedia states that one of the "unique weapons" of that unit was the 1941 Johnson machine gun. However, don't believe there were any in the movie.
 

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We gave a bunch to the Dutch for use in Dutch Indonesia. The Marines also used them...Carlson's guys, I think. Probably some US Army special units.

Johnson also made a side loading rifle used by some Marines for awhile. And yes, both the rifle and MG were .30 (30-06) Cal.

Interesting that Johnson had come up with the inline buttstock 25-30 years before Stoner (M16) and development of the M14A1/E2.

Good looking weapon too!
 

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We gave a bunch to the Dutch for use in Dutch Indonesia. The Marines also used them...Carlson's guys, I think. Probably some US Army special units.

Johnson also made a side loading rifle used by some Marines for awhile. And yes, both the rifle and MG were .30 (30-06) Cal.

Interesting that Johnson had come up with the inline buttstock 25-30 years before Stoner (M16) and development of the M14A1/E2.

Good looking weapon too!
Stoner also based his bolt design on the Johnson 1941 rifle bolt, and Armalite hired Melvin to promote the AR10 to the Army.
 

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Dror light machine gun

Melvin Johnson marketed the gun to the Israeli's in the late 1940s. They called it the Dror light machine gun. Prototypes were built, and some limited production. Numrich had a bunch of parts years back.
Melvin also developed the 5.7mm Johnson. A 22 necked down from a 30 carbine round. Some where I have one of these carbine barrels - marked Johnson Automatics. Melvin was know to run around in a full length raccoon coat. Quite a character.
 
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The Dutch had the original contracts for the rifles and were set to ship to them when Germany invaded and we couldn't ship them. Melvin Johnson, a Marine Reservist, pushed hard for the Army and especially the Marines to adopt his rifle. Some of the Raider Units had them and the Marine paratroops had were to have them issued to them as well. The Johnson Rifle Story was an interesting read if any of you feel like giving it a whirl.
 

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Interesting. Thanks for the pics.

Coincidentally, last night I was watching "The Devil's Brigade" with William Holden. Looking up some info on the real deal, Wikipedia states that one of the "unique weapons" of that unit was the 1941 Johnson machine gun. However, don't believe there were any in the movie.
Yup...1st. Special Service Force.

I remember seeing at least one in the movie when they are on top of the plateau but can't prove it.

"Stille...oder du bist tot"
 

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I also read somewhere that a few were sent to Guadalcanal to keep the Japanese guessing when the GI's were out of ammo. The pings from the Garands were supposedly a giveaway to the Japanese to start one of their Banzai charges....

On a side note, a lady brought her husbands gun collection into a local gun store to have them appraised. The first rifle that I saw was an immaculate M-1941 Johnson rifle...... I had a grand on me, I should have offered it to her on the spot, might have got lucky. But since she was recently widowed, and I figured the gun was worth way more than a grand, I just admired it and kept my mouth shut. She probably needed all the money she could get out of it.....
 

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Johnson LMG Experience

Mym14folds, thanks a bunch for the cool pics.

I actually got to hold a Johnson LMG in my hands! Talk about up close and personal!

I lived in Albuquerque, NM for a couple of years back in the mid-70's. Sometimes when I had Saturdays off, I would get up early and drive around town checking out gun shops and pawn shops, looking for deals on guns and other meaningful junk.

I frequently dropped by a gun shop called "Sir Sidney's Sidearm Sales". It was a run-down looking shop in a sketchy part of town. The proprietor was a man named Sid McQueen. Any of you true firearms enthusiasts that lived in Albuquerque in those years know what I'm talking about.

When you walked into Sid's, you were immediately stopped dead in your tracks by an incredible array of automatic weapons. Sid's was a real Class III dealer. There were racks of Thompsons, Reisings, MP40s, BARs, you name it, lining the walls. There were machineguns and submachineguns suspended by wires, hanging from the ceiling. The prices on these fine weapons was absolutely chump-change by today's standards. I used to drop by that shop just to stand around and drool.

One morning I dropped into Sid's, and in the back corner he had a Johnson Light Machinegun that looked new AND an exceptionally clean FG-42 (Fallschirmjaeger Gewehr). Both were fully operational. I knew what they were (I used to read everything I could get my hands on about WWII firearms) and I started to barrage Sid with questions until he actually allowed me to hold them, work the actions, etc. I wanted to go out on the West Mesa and fire them, but that was absolutely out of the question.

Sid was not only a dealer, but also a gunsmith and firearms designer. He owned the Johnson, and the FG-42 was on loan to him from a collector in San Antonio. Sid's goal was to design a new rifle for US troops, as he had received less than good reports about the M-16's used in Viet Nam. He wanted to hybridize the Johnson with the FG-42 and chamber it in 7.62 NATO. I don't think he ever got anywhere with that project. Sadly, he passed away a few years later.

He did design a really cool 9mm folding SMG, but I don't think it ever went into production. The prototypes were really neat.

Lots of fun back then.

Also, there is some WWII documentary on either the History Channel or the Military Channel that shows footage of the only Johnson LMG known to have been used in combat in the European Theatre. I think that the film footage was taken in Sicily or Anzio. Can't remember. The Johnson LMG's and rifles were strictly Marine Corps issue. Some Army unit that had been in the Pacific had traded (or somehow liberated) the Johnson from the Marines. I don't remember those details either. I'll have to look for that show again.

One more FYI, my dad was a SeaBee attached to the First Marine Division on Guadalcanal. He told me about the Johnsons that some of the Marines had. He preferred his 03A3.

Hope my post wasn't too long, just had to share. I love this stuff.

Joe
 

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All I've got is my lowly JSAR. I'm looking for a .308 barrel for it but it is a joy to shoot.
 

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I also read somewhere that a few were sent to Guadalcanal to keep the Japanese guessing when the GI's were out of ammo. The pings from the Garands were supposedly a giveaway to the Japanese to start one of their Banzai charges....

On a side note, a lady brought her husbands gun collection into a local gun store to have them appraised. The first rifle that I saw was an immaculate M-1941 Johnson rifle...... I had a grand on me, I should have offered it to her on the spot, might have got lucky. But since she was recently widowed, and I figured the gun was worth way more than a grand, I just admired it and kept my mouth shut. She probably needed all the money she could get out of it.....
The Marines on Guadacanal were equipped with 1903A2 Springfields. The first Garands arrived with Army troops of the 164th Infantry in October, 1942. All Marine Raider and Paratroop units would have had both Johnson rifles and machine guns.
 

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Stoner also based his bolt design on the Johnson 1941 rifle bolt, and Armalite hired Melvin to promote the AR10 to the Army.
Stoner consulted personally with Johnson whilst developing his new rifle. Think of a Stoner rifle as a lightened gas operated Johnson, more M1944/Dror than M1941 or the semiauto rifle.

Too bad the Stoner aluminum receiver wasn't suitable for open-bolt full auto fire like the Johnson LMG variants. The FG42 also ran closed-bolt semi/open-bolt full auto, but was more like a detuned belt fed than a "super rifle".

M1944/Dror lower group:

Semi


Full automatic. Note the raised bolt catch near the butt stock area. The bolt catch is retracted in the upper photo for semi auto closed bolt firing.
 

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The Marines on Guadacanal were equipped with 1903A2 Springfields. The first Garands arrived with Army troops of the 164th Infantry in October, 1942. All Marine Raider and Paratroop units would have had both Johnson rifles and machine guns.
The M1903A2 is a sub-caliber device for training. The Marines on Guadalcanal had M1903 rifles.

Stating that 'All" Marine Raider and Paratroop units (that's Para Marines) would have had both Johnson rifles and machine guns may be a bit of an overstatement.
 

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Mym14folds, thanks a bunch for the cool pics.

I actually got to hold a Johnson LMG in my hands! Talk about up close and personal!

I lived in Albuquerque, NM for a couple of years back in the mid-70's. Sometimes when I had Saturdays off, I would get up early and drive around town checking out gun shops and pawn shops, looking for deals on guns and other meaningful junk.

I frequently dropped by a gun shop called "Sir Sidney's Sidearm Sales". It was a run-down looking shop in a sketchy part of town. The proprietor was a man named Sid McQueen. Any of you true firearms enthusiasts that lived in Albuquerque in those years know what I'm talking about.

When you walked into Sid's, you were immediately stopped dead in your tracks by an incredible array of automatic weapons. Sid's was a real Class III dealer. There were racks of Thompsons, Reisings, MP40s, BARs, you name it, lining the walls. There were machineguns and submachineguns suspended by wires, hanging from the ceiling. The prices on these fine weapons was absolutely chump-change by today's standards. I used to drop by that shop just to stand around and drool.

One morning I dropped into Sid's, and in the back corner he had a Johnson Light Machinegun that looked new AND an exceptionally clean FG-42 (Fallschirmjaeger Gewehr). Both were fully operational. I knew what they were (I used to read everything I could get my hands on about WWII firearms) and I started to barrage Sid with questions until he actually allowed me to hold them, work the actions, etc. I wanted to go out on the West Mesa and fire them, but that was absolutely out of the question.

Sid was not only a dealer, but also a gunsmith and firearms designer. He owned the Johnson, and the FG-42 was on loan to him from a collector in San Antonio. Sid's goal was to design a new rifle for US troops, as he had received less than good reports about the M-16's used in Viet Nam. He wanted to hybridize the Johnson with the FG-42 and chamber it in 7.62 NATO. I don't think he ever got anywhere with that project. Sadly, he passed away a few years later.

He did design a really cool 9mm folding SMG, but I don't think it ever went into production. The prototypes were really neat.

Lots of fun back then.

Also, there is some WWII documentary on either the History Channel or the Military Channel that shows footage of the only Johnson LMG known to have been used in combat in the European Theatre. I think that the film footage was taken in Sicily or Anzio. Can't remember. The Johnson LMG's and rifles were strictly Marine Corps issue. Some Army unit that had been in the Pacific had traded (or somehow liberated) the Johnson from the Marines. I don't remember those details either. I'll have to look for that show again.

One more FYI, my dad was a SeaBee attached to the First Marine Division on Guadalcanal. He told me about the Johnsons that some of the Marines had. He preferred his 03A3.

Hope my post wasn't too long, just had to share. I love this stuff.

Joe
Don't believe it is correct to state that, "The Johnson LMG's and rifles were strictly Marine Corps issue."

And M1903A3 rifles were just beginning to be manufactured during the time the 1st MarDiv was on Guadalcanal. Perhaps you father instead had a M1903?.
 
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