75mm GMC M3 and 4.recce

Discussion in 'Recce' started by dijit80, Dec 15, 2008.

  1. martinb

    martinb Member

    Dad was with the 56th Recce as Driver/Radio Operator (although I'm not sure which Squadron) and he always talked about his "Half Track".

    Have to check with big brother as he has all dad's papers and maybe some photographs.
  2. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    It is a distinct possibility as both the scout car and the Half track were manufactured by White.
    Just learned from Amazon that my copy of the 4th Division is not available! Now looking for an alternative supplier.
    Just ordered with World War Two Books.
  3. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    This appears to be a circular thread - as it seems to be going no where !

    ALL half tracks were called "whites" and when fitted with the 75mm's - this was the initial "short" 75's and were usually in the HQ squadron in most armoured car units and Recce regiments.

    It must be recalled that the operation "olive" of the Gothic Line battles was a nightmare dreamed up by Lt.Gen Oliver Leese because he did not like to serve alongside Mark Clark - and I feel sure that most of us would have agreed - BUT it did leave us understrength inasmuch as the Polish Corps had only a few tanks and were augmented by a Tank battalion from 9th Armoured bde until Ancona when they went over the other side at Florence - the Canadian 1st Div had only the 21st Brit Tank bde and 5th canadian also had just one Tank bde - the 4th div had their recce - over by Gemmano later did the 46th and 56th have 2nd armoured bde and so one can see that the 8th Army was considerably short of armour and while the 1st Armoured Div was rushing up to assist - if the 4th div was likened to a first division side - the 1st Armoured had to be a pub league team after 18 months in Tunisia - and were broken up for spares after the battle.....so any recce unit with a gun was very welcome and we didn't really care where they went or what they were called - as long as they could shoot.

    incidently - 16/5th Lancers( 26th Armourde bde) never traded in their Shermans for Staghounds and Greyhounds until the middle of 1946... and 78th Div recce were the first into Austria and that flagpole at the entrance to Austria boasts of the near civil war they started in Cairo !
  4. dijit80

    dijit80 Junior Member

    Thanks for the input Tom. Do you know if there was any standardisation of how the recce regiments were re-fitted or was it rather hap-hazard? I ask firstly because I'm very interested in the Recce regiments (which we hear relatively little of these days, as they were all disbanded soon after the war) and because I'm trying to figure out the regimental organisation for the tabletop game 'Flames of War' and for that how many there were, how many observation teams they had, where they fitted into the whole regiment, etc is pretty essential.

    ... and 78th Div recce were the first into Austria and that flagpole at the entrance to Austria boasts of the near civil war they started in Cairo !
    This sounds a very interesting story ;)
  5. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    dijit80 -
    recce regiments always confused us - all the time - on another thread someone posted a full schematic of their organisation - and I always thought that the heavy stuff - i.e mortars and 75's were allocated to HQ squadrons but I notice on one picture that a half track is shown with the US Star - BUT with the red and white of British Armoured PLUS the triangle for "A" squadron but- no div sign shown - so god knows who they belonged to....I am not a games player so don't know what is involved

    you will have to study the 78th Div short vacation in Egypt - July - Aug '44 for details of the hoo haa in Cairo - or get Ron on this - I think he started it all ....
  6. dijit80

    dijit80 Junior Member

    The red and white makes sense as in the begining of '44 saw the recce regiments absorbed into the royal armoured corps. I can't seem to see a US star on the picture show, but if Owen is right and its actually of the Kings Dragoon Guards they it's not all that relivant. But if I remember right then some British vehicles were also marked with the US star, however that might just have been during the D-day operations I'm not entirely sure. It could also be that they were re-painted after the US donated them to the British. But the markings for A squadron are puzzling though.
  7. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    I think Tom was refering to vehicle in post #5.
  8. dijit80

    dijit80 Junior Member

  9. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD


    Is it possable your old man called the half track white armoured cars due to the simalarity between the half track and scout car?

    This is from The Desert Rats by Maj-Gen GL Verney DSC MVO .
    The book drew sent me.

    Chapter 6 Italy. page 185

    There was no great changes in equipment of units except in the case of the 11th Hussars; the squadrons , in addition to the ordinary Troop of two Daimlers and two Dingos , were given a Troop mounted in White Scout Cars who combined the task of infantry with those of Sappers, and in place of the Jeep Troop there was a Gun Troop with two 75-mms mounted in White half-track Scout Cars.

    As Tom said in , both half tracks & scout cars were called Whites.
    In this bit of text they're calledWhite half-track scout cars, what a mouthful
  10. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    It is rather confusing as units were apparently issued different equipment at different times.
    I think it was just down to what was available at the time.

    After completing the required paperwork sent off for my fathers records last week and so when the records arrive I can narrow search parameters down a little.

    The thread has turned up a lot of useful information regarding just how diverse the Recce vehicles were.

  11. Recce_Mitch

    Recce_Mitch Very Senior Member

    It was an M6 Greyhound of 6 troop 56 Recce that was the first to cross into Austria on 7th May 1945

  12. Dave55

    Dave55 Atlanta, USA

    Here's an M3 captured by Japanese in Philippines. Maybe a Ford sedan behind it?

  13. Dave55

    Dave55 Atlanta, USA

    Here's another captured M3 on Luzon


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