Object Title

Trench mortar (schwerer Minenwerfer)

Trench mortar (schwerer Minenwerfer)

Date

1914-1918

Object Number

XIX.953

Provenance

Presented 10 June 2004. This mortar was brought back from France in 1918 by Colonel Arthur W.Brewill of the Sherwood Foresters and had remained in the same location for 86 years.

Physical Description

Comprised of a steel rifled L/3 tube with a hydro-spring recoil system attached to either side of the barrel. Trunnions exist on either side of the barrel enabling it to be attached to two steel plates that are rivetted to a large steel base plate. Through a series of hand operated wheels the barrel can be raised from +30 degrees to +85 degrees of elevation and to permit some traverse. On either side of the base plate are two spigots to which are attached the carriage wheels for transportation. The oak spokes are ten in number and although the tyres of mild forged steel have survived, due to corrosion they were not attached to the wheel. It was muzzle-loaded, the cotton bag cartridge being inserted first followed by the 97 kg shell. This had a pre-engraved driving band which had to be inserted so that this band engaged with the grooves. A friction tube was inserted into the breech end and the weapon elevated and fired. Either high explosive or gas shell were fired, a muzzle velocity of 152 metres per second achieved and a maximum range of 878 metres obtained. These mortars were used to destroy large areas of enemy trenches (50 kg of explosive in an HE shell) or to clear barbed wire.

Firearms/Artillery

Serial Number 2563

Calibre

25 cm

Inscriptions and Marks

Date
1917
recuperator base
plate on top of recuperator
recuperator

Associations

Places Germany

Bibliographic References

Herbert Jager, German Artillery of World War One, Crowood Press (Marlborough, 2001), pp. 68-82.

Notes

This mortar had been offered to the Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Regiment prior to April 2004 by the owner.