thompson weapon

Sometimes insults sound a lot
like gunshots

and he doesn’t love you
back.  Do not wear your skin
lazy.  Do not ask why.  I am saying:
never talk about yourself in past tense.
Pour your coffee black, no room, pretend
you still know how to hold your own
hands in midday light, it is

alright even if you don’t.  Trigger
warnings like: nighttime, his name.
Trigger warnings like, Eric Church,
Springsteen, I know he never asked
how you’re doing.  Like I know that
they will say he is doing it for you,

bullshit.  Even the silence is loud in
a warzone.  I am saying: you fell for a
coward and came out with deeper stripes
and it is alright if he doesn’t love you back, he
is past tense, held your body with no room to
simply be, you simply mistook his control for
safety; I am saying do not romanticize him
into anything more than an exit wound.  

you are the gun.
Empty the chamber.

—  From Certain Mouths, valentina thompson

I feel like we don’t talk up the weapons enough. I mean, no offense to the meisters– they’re brave and badass and awesome as hell, but I feel like we don’t talk about how equally amazing the weapons are?

From first glance, it may not seem that the weapons do much at all except lay stagnant in the hands of their Meister but dude?? They’re out there. They’re on the front lines. The Meister may be soft and squishy but the weapon is the one who takes the blow. They protect and they guard and they are selfless to the point of giving me cold sweats.

Also, resonance? Yeah, they amplify and help stream it and that is a huuuuuge thing. That is super cool and amazing and they do such a great job. Good work guys.

And I think the weapons may also have some sort of sway on accuracy and precision, judging by the practicing Soul and Maka did, and how Spirit’s actions seemed to have consequences on Stein and Shinigami-sama’s battles (“Senpai, don’t move”/ spirit screaming as they attack Asura) and think how VIGILANT. How much CONCENTRATION that must take. One mistake and your partner’s life could be at risk. God, what a monumental job.

The Meisters are awesome but I feel like they kinda get most of the glory– let’s give it up for the weapons.


Thompson M1A1 submachine gun

Manufactured by Auto-Ordnance Corp. c.WW2 for the US Army - serial number 432620.
.45ACP 20-round detachable stick magazine, blowback fully automatic, parkerized finish.

The M1 series of Tommy guns, made for the US military, differ from the previous 1921 and 1928 ‘overstamped’ models by having an horizontal front grip - a feature shared by the earlier military M1928A1 - a rougher finish, a non-finned barrel and more importantly a bolt actuator situated on the right of the receiver, no longer on top of it. They also couldn’t accept the 50 and 100 round drum magazines that make the Thompson submachine gun iconic to this day.

A Thompson M1921 with a 100-round drum magazine. Note the blued finish - earlier models were much fancier than military one.

These front pistol grips make me fucking cringe everytime I lay eyes on them.


Thompson M1927A1 submachine gun

Manufactured by Auto Ordinance Corp c.1974-99 - serial number 25167.
.45ACP 50-round drum or 20-round stick removable box magazine, blowback closed bolt semi-automatic, extended barrel, front pistol grip, gold-plated.

A modern production of the Thompson, with a few internal differences to legally make it a rifle. The violin case is mandatory.


1920’s Chinese copy of a “Thampson” submachine gun

The Warlord Era of Chinese history lasted from the 1920’s up to the early or mid 1930’s.  During this period, China was divided between a number of warlords who ruled over their own personal Chinese fiefdoms, the Chinese National Government, Japanese occupation forces, and Chinese Communist Revolutionaries.  With China embroiled in a free for all between multiple factions, there was an insatiable need for arms, especially due to an arms embargo enacted by the League of Nations.  Thus, during the Warlord Era, many domestic arms makers produced weapons for warlord armies.  Most of these weapons were copies of European and other foreign designs. One of the most popular was the American Thompson Submachine gun.  Examples of copies can be found not only in .45 ACP, but also 9mm Luger, 7.62x25 Tokarev, and 7.63x25 Mauser.  Almost every warlord established his own armory, one of the most prolific Thompson SMG producers was the Taiyuan Arsenal serving the Shanxi warlord Gen. Yan Xishan.

Some of the more interesting Chinese copies were not those produced by warlord factories, but those produced by China’s cottage industry.  During the Warlord Era, many thousands of firearms were produced by small time gunmakers working in small shops, private homes, garages, basements, and attics, built by hand with whatever materials were available. One such example is the Thompson SMG pictured above, on display at the Imperial War Museum in London.  Many of these home gunmakers would often mark their pieces with Roman Alphabet trade names and other markings, often to trick clients into believing that they were buying a genuine foreign import, not a handmade copy built in some guy’s kitchen from low quality materials.  Often these stampings and markings have interesting misspellings.  Many are contradictory, for example a handmade pistol with both “Mauser” and “Fabrique Nationale” trade markings.  Some are a completely nonsensical.

In regards to the Thompson SMG above, the weapon has no markings with the exception of “THAMPSON SUB-MACHINE GUN” on the right hand side of the receiver.

Let’s get away from revolvers and look at another iconic piece of American patriotism. The Trench Sweeper, The Chicago Typewriter, The Chopper, or just the Thompson, it’s one of the most iconic guns in history. It’s the Thompson Submachinegun. This is gonna be a long one.

The history of this trench broom begins with US Army General John Taliaferro Thompson. Former chief of the Small Arms division of the Ordnance Department, Thompson was sympathetic to the Allies, as were most Americans. And while working at Remington, heading the Remington plant at Eddystone, Pennsylvania. Having heard of the horrible trench fighting that beset most of World War 1, Thompson was determined to make something to give Allies an edge. He found a patent by John Bell Blish for a delayed blowback breech system and him and Blish founded Auto-Ordnance.

The original idea was for an automatic rifle in a full sized rifle cartridge, what we know know as the Thompson Auto-Rifle. This design went nowhere, so Thompson got the idea to instead make a similar idea in .45 ACP. And after reports of the German’s Bergmann MP18 came back, Thompson began working on making his design into an SMG.

The initial prototypes were slightly similar to the gun we all know and love, but were too late for WWI. With all military contracts dried up, Auto-Ordnance and Colt, who had bought the rights to also make it began eyeing the law enforcement side. And besides being bought by law enforcement, it became a common weapon for gangsters.

From Bonnie And Clyde to John Dillinger, the Thompson became an icon overnight. Gangsters across the 50 states used them, as they were reasonably accurate, had a very high rate of fire and thus came the other models. In 1928, Thompson was fired from his position in Auto-Ordnance during a period of low sales, but also released the updated M1928 version of the Thompson.

Yes I know it looks a lot like the M1921 above, but the M1928 was the first step in making the Thompson a military weapon. The bluing of the original was cut down, the rate of fire was reduced via heavier actuators and less powerful recoil springs. They also began to have horizontal foregrips instead of the pistol grip. This modification helped get the Thompson military contracts, first with the US Military during the Banana Wars, then world militaries from England to the warlords of China. Some of the first Thompsons were extensively by the IRA during the Irish Civil War. And WWII put the Thompson on the map.

The Thompson’s saw it’s biggest use in the largest conflict in World history. The original M1928 was the standard SMG for the British Military and the US and quickly expanded to be one of the most common SMG’s for the Allied military. It’s high rate of fire and reliability were offset by it’s high price, something that led the British to adopt the STEN gun in it’s place. But that still didn’t stop Thompsons from being used by the British, Free French, US, and many many other Allied forces in WWII and afterwards into Korea and even into Vietnam.

The final versions of the Thompson, the M1928A1, The M1 and the M1A1 were made in responce to the guns relatively high cost in manufacturing. While the US Military tried to replace it with the cheaper M3 “Grease Gun”, nothing could really dislodge the Thompson from it’s spot. And even with the rise of the assault rifle, the Thompson’s final days in the US Military were in the jungles of Vietnam, where it’s power in close quarters made it a loved weapon by LRRP operators and MAC-V SOG and SEALS.

And that is the Thompson’s legacy, from the gangster classic to the War Hero, it’s a gun for the everyman, and almost 100 years after the first M1921′s creation, they still see service. And you know damn well a gun this iconic is in more movies than you could shake a stick at.

Ever since the 1930′s, The Thompson’s been a common sight in film. It’s heavy usage by the gangsters of the 1920′s and 1930′s to it being standard US Army issue for 30+ years makes it a Hollywood legend. From films set during the Roaring 20′s, the dark days of WWII to even modern day or sci-fi futures, A Thompson will show up. It’s big, loud, heavy and makes quite a glorious muzzle flash with the Cutts compensator.

You know how this goes by now, don’t you, from the silver screen to the computer screen.

The rise of the WWII shooter in the early 2000′s made the M1A1 Thompson a staple of many FPS games, with it arming the British and US forces just like it did in real life. With the first video game portrayal of a Thompson in 1997′s Blood, it’s been a long video game line, from the undersea in Bioshock to the zombie-filled streets of Killing Floor. Even the post-apocalypse has room for a Thompson, with one if Fallout 2, Tactics and New Vegas as well as a couple of Mafia appearances. It’s big, heavy and fires big bullets, it’s as iconic on the video game scene as it is in the movie scene and in real life.

And that is the tale of the Thompson Submachine gun, from the arsenals of gangsters and police to the hands of every GI from Saipan to Berlin, it’s a classic in every sense of the word. Whether stuffed in a violin case ready for use, rattling the streets of Dublin, firing into the night from Biafra to Bucharest or hanging on a wall, it’s a piece of history and will keep shooting on for years to come.

From Ireland to Lebanon, from Palestine and Berkeley…”