DOUGHBOYS WILL FIGHT WITH BRITISH ENFIELD RIFLES
Washington, D.C. (JFK+50) One hundred years ago today, May 15, 1917, Frank A. Scott*, chairman of the General Munitions Board of the Council of National Defense, announced the decision to adopt the British Enfield rifle** "manufactured to use American ammunition."
The decision, made after consultation with British and French military experts, reflected the facts that there were insufficient facilities in the United States to produce Springfield rifles and most small arms companies were already producing Enfields for the British army.
The Chicago Daily Tribune reported that there were plans to produce Enfield rifles for a million men.
*Colonel Frank A. Scott (1873-1949) was born in Cleveland, Ohio & received an Honorary Doctor of Laws from Western Reserve University. FAS formed the General Munitions Board which became the War Industries Board during WWI. He co-founded the Army Ordinance Association in 1919 & served as director 1919-1949.
**Lee-Enfield, a bolt-action, magazine-fed repeating rifle which was the standard for the British Army 1895 to 1957. The rifle bolt system was developed by James Paris Lee at the Royal Small Arms Factory in Enfield, U.K.
"American Army To Fight with British Rifle," The Chicago Daily Tribune, May 16, 1917.
"Colonel Frank A. Scott," www.goordinance.army.mil/
1918 Lee-Enfield Mk III Rifle
Photo by Commander Zulu 2004