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World War II Army Field Manuals

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This page will list some Field Manuals that are hard to find or ones that I find interesting. Easy 39th has a larger list of Field Manuels and Pamphlets so if you don’t see what you want here you can head to that page. In addition, for a fuller list you can find about 1,000 of them between 1940-1945 on the Archive.org website. So if you don’t see one here try looking there.

Field Manuals

FM 7-15 Heavy Weapons Company Rifle Regiment May 1942

FM 7-20 Rifle Battalion Sept 1942

FM 7-40 Rifle Regiment Feb 1942

Instructors’ guide for Mobilization Training Program 8-101 – This is a complete 8-hour-a-day, 6 days-a-week, for 4 months basic training program for medical unit personnel.

What I find interesting is that it shows what should be part of a battalion aid station and how combat aid men (aka “medics”) are used in the medical organization chart.

Essentially they treat wounded and try to pool them together and litter bearers bring them to the battalion aid station for further treatment.

FM 8-40-Medical Field Manual Field Sanitation – Contains information on how to clean and stay sanitary when dealing with diseases, foods, water, cooking, bathing, cleaning, trapping bugs, and human waste.

FM 20-15 Tents and Tent Pitching FEB 1945 – a guide that covers to how pitch various tents. While not included in the manual I did include schematics on adding a wood frame to the M1934 Pyramidal Tent as well as a diagram on how to make collapsible tent poles.

Collapsible tent poles weren’t, to the best of my knowledge, in WW2 but since these poles are long breaking them down makes it easier to pack and travel with them.

I had these made for me once and I used it as the center or ridge pole in my tent.

FM 21-100 Soldiers Handbook 1941

FM21-15, Aug 1941 Equipment, Clothing, and Tent Pitching Supplemental.

FM 2345 Browning Machine Gun, Caliber .30, HB M1919A4

TABLE No III – WIRE – A guide that shows the composition, insuluation, weight, measurements and remarks of the different kinds of wire.

It’s noted that the 130 Assault wire gives a lot of trouble and needs to be protected. Any dampness in it causes issues. So holes need to be patched with tape.

Also, in a report of the 397th Infantry Regiment of the 100th Division regarding W-143 wire they say

The wire is unsuited for small units as the wire cannot be sufficently carried on a reel, the insulation doesn’t break when the wire does making it hard to troubleshoot, and it takes too long to splice as the insulation doesn’t come off fast enough – especially when under fire.

FM 105-5 Umpire Manual April 1942

FM 105-5 Umpire Manual MAR 1944

FM 70-15 Operations in Snow and Extreme Cold NOV 1944