The elephant and the machine gun.

I just love this photo; it’s utterly bonkers! Taken in an unknown location in 1914, it depicts a US Corporal aiming a Colt M1895 atop a fully grown Sri Lankan elephant.

I would wager that the brave Corporal has not attempted to fire the machine gun, as I doubt the placid looking beast he rides would appreciate the clatter and shock of having 450 round a minute dispensed so close to his lug holes.

The gun is John Moses Browning’s M1895 Colt-Browning machine gun, nicknamed the ‘Potato Digger,’ as the movement of the arm required some eight inches of clearance at the underside of the weapon, lest the gun dig itself into the dirt. Or in this case the elephant’s shoulders…

Elephant mounted machine gun 1914The elephant looks suitably unimpressed! Perhaps he has never seen Far Cry 4, or the Lord of the Rings films?


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Filed under Photography, Timology

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