By U.S. ArmyMay 30, 2019
The family of 155MM medium howitzers (M1, M114, and M198) traces its history to 1941. The M1 was first produced in 1941 and was renamed the M114 after World War II. Its tactical mission was to provide general supporting fire, and it had a range of nine miles. The recoil mechanism and gun carriage were manufactured at Rock Island Arsenal during World War II. The cannon barrel was made at Watervliet Arsenal in New York.
A 155 mm Mount for Many Purposes
First designed in 1939 and produced in 1941, the M114 155MM howitzer is one of the longest-serving weapon systems ever produced. The M114 entered service during World War II as the M1. It was later designated the M114 after a reorganization of the Army's numbering system. The M114 was the standard issue 155MM howitzer during both the Korean and Vietnam Wars. The howitzer was replaced beginning in 1979 when the M198 howitzer, also produced at Rock Island Arsenal, was introduced.
The M114 was assembled at Rock Island Arsenal from 1941 through 1953, with the carriage and recoil mechanisms produced in-house. During that time, RIA assembled more 10,000 howitzers. Many were sold to foreign operators, which numbered over 40 by 2016.
The M114 fired multiple types of ammunition, including high explosives, smoke, and chemical shells. Shells generally weighed between 90 and 100 pounds and used various propelling charges to strike up to nine miles away.
The M114 remains in foreign service with over 20 operators, accounting for around 1,000 of the units produced.