1st 155 MM Gun Btry, 1st Marine Division
United States Marine Corps
1st 155 MM Gun Btry, 1st Marine Division Description
155mm Gun Batteries were independent batteries, that were part of the Fleet Marine Force (FMF), typically commanded by a Major and fully capable of performing their own administration, organizational maintenance, and organic supply functions similar to that of a battalion. At the time of the Vietnam involvement there were at least 5 of these batteries in the Marine Corps. Four of them (1st, 3rd, 5th, and 7th) were part of Force Troops/FMF PAC and saw action in Vietnam. The other battery (2nd) was assigned to the 2nd Field Artillery Group - Force Troops/FMF ATL and was based at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. In Vietnam they were often placed under the administrative and operational control of one of the divisions' artillery Regiments (i.e., 11th or 12th). This battery, 1st Guns, was attached to the 12th Marines (3rd MARDIV), the 11th Marines (1sr MARDIV), and to the 1st Field Artillery Group (FMFPac) at various times during its 4 year, 7 month deployment to Vietnam. The battery fired self-propelled 155mm Guns (M53) that were unique to the USMC until February 1969, when they converted to 175mm Guns (M107). They were often deployed with self-propelled 8" Howitzers (m55s) which shared the same carriage. In 1969, when the Marine Corps retired the M53's and converted all the 155mm Gun batteries to 175mm Gun Batteries, the unit's designation became the "1st 175mm Gun Battery (SP)..
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