Wednesday, September 3, 2008
In World War Two the Soviet Union, Japan, and Germany fielded thousands and thousands of horse drawn wagons and horse cavalry. The US Army was in the process of disbanding all their horse cavalry units and yet several generals asked for horse cavalry to be sent to Europe. Some were so impatient they formed their own ad hoc cavalry units.
This photo shows US Army Rangers on horseback. Note the Ranger on the left has a BAR. I have used some of my various ACW and WWI horseback troops to make a few US Army horse cavalry for Bataan. The last charge of the US Army horse cavalry took place there, and routed the attacking Japanese.
We often think of the Germans as being highly mechanized, and some of their units were, but they still relied on horses to pull hundreds of wagons in every infantry division. Many metal companies make WWII era horse drawn wagons, and there are many plastic ones that will fill in as German. The Germans used wagons from all over Europe and so many types of wagons will work for them. The wagon above is a Napoleonic French heavy wagon from HaT. I look forward to their release of a new WWII German wagon set, perhaps next year.