The steamer “Mar Cantábrico” carried guns and ammunition from Mexico to the Spanish Republicans during the Spanish Civil war, but she was being watched since her depart from Veracruz and was captured near Bilbao, in the north front, on march 8, 1937.
Among the captured cargo there were many interesting items:
6 20mm Semag machine guns, and 12.600 cartridges.
Which gun type is this Semag gun and what cartridge it used?
14 Colt machine guns, water cooled.
26 Colt machine guns, air cooled.
990 Remington light machine guns, model 1917.
Were these guns made in USA for Mexico?
984 Winchester light machine guns.
Which gun is this?
705.000 cartridges caliber .30 Special
‘30 Especial’ is Mexican designation for the .30-06, to distinguish the ammunition from the more widely used .30-30. The use of this name denotes Mexican origin. A headstamp is shown below.
1.378.800 machine gun cartridges, in belts.
The headstamp (R A H 16) was reportedly found in cartridges from the Mar Cantábrico. Maybe these were the cartridges that came in belts.
50 crates of big game hunting ammunition, explosive and dum-dum bullets.
I understand that all this ammo had actually expanding, not explosive, bullets. Maybe the Mexican government or whoever acquired even the gun stores stocks. Can we know how many cartridges fit in 50 crates?
Your comments are highly appreciated.
Here’s a picture of a fired mexican military case found in a battlefield near Madrid:
Here’s a box of expansive ammunition from the crates captured at the Mar Cantábrico: