William Crozier (artillerist) : biography
William Crozier (Carrollton, Ohio, February 19, 1855 – November 11, 1942) was an American artillerist and inventor.
From 1879 to 1884 Crozier was instructor in mathematics at West Point, and was superintendent of the Watertown, Massachusetts Arsenal from 1884 to 1887. In 1888 he was sent by the War Department to study recent developments in artillery in Europe, and upon his return he was placed in full charge of the construction of gun carriages for the army, and with General Adelbert R. Buffington, the chief of ordnance, he invented the Buffington–Crozier disappearing gun carriage (1893)."". in: The New York Times, November 24, 1894. He also invented a wire-wound gun, and perfected many appliances connected with heavy and field ordnance.
In 1890 Crozier attained the rank of captain. During the Spanish-American War he was inspector-general for the Atlantic and Gulf coast defences. In 1899 he was one of the American delegates to the Peace Conference at the Hague. He later served in the Philippine Islands on the staffs of Generals John C. Bates and Theodore Schwan, and in 1900 was chief of ordnance on the staff of General Adna Chaffee during the China Relief Expedition.
In November 1901 he was appointed brigadier-general and succeeded General Buffington as Chief of Ordnance of the United States Army. He served until 1918, not counting the time he was away at the Army War College in 1912 to 1913. He presided over adoption of such firearms as the famous M1911 to the obscure M1909 Benet-Mercie light machine gun, as well as the end/removal of the last of the 30-06 Gatling Guns from the Army arsenal. In addition, he also oversaw and authorized the various arsenals around the country to donate and sell various condemened cannon for use in town centers, soldier's monuments, and posts for fraternal organizations such as the Grand Army of the Republic. Many of these donated cannon can be seen in these locations to this day. His Notes on the Construction of Ordnance, published by the war department, were used as text-books in the schools for officers, and he also authored several other important publications on military subjects.
Other very famous firearm systems Crozier presided over the adoption of include the M1903 rifle, the M1918 BAR (adopted in 1917), and the M1917 machine gun, all of which would serve well into the latter half of the 20th century. He also played a role in the rejection of the Lewis Gun by the Army, although it was quickly adopted by the British and used effectively through both World Wars. A few were used by the United States Marine Corps, and eventually, by the Army to a limited degree.
He died at age 87 in 1942.
In 1917, after a careful inspection of certain factories in which Henry Gantt had installed his methods, Crozier, then Chief of Ordnance, retained Gantt to act in a consulting capacity on production, first at the Frankford Arsenal, and then, immediately after the declaration of war, in the Ordnance Department at Washington.Wallace Clark and Henry Gantt (1922) . New York, Ronald Press.
Large orders had been placed with arsenals and other manufacturing plants for the production of arms and munitions, but it was difficult to get a comprehensive idea of what progress was being made in the filling of these orders. Quantities had suddenly jumped from hundreds to millions, and it was impossible to convey by means of typewritten tables the significance of such unusual quantities or the time necessary to produce them. Charts of the usual type were unsatisfactory because they did not sufficiently emphasize the time and because of their bulk, since only one item could be put on a sheet.
Gantt concentrated his attention on the development of a method of charting which would show a comparison between performance and promises. Several years previous to this time, he had used a chart on which the work for machines was "laid out" according to the time required to do it. The Gantt Progress Chart, as developed from this early form, was found to help in the making of definite plans and to be highly effective in getting those plans executed. The rate at which the work goes forward is continuously compared with the advance of time, which induces action to accelerate or retard that rate. These charts are not static records of the past they deal with the present and future and their only connection with the past is with respect to its effect upon the future.
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