manufactured at the Nagoya Army Arsenal in the Toriimatsu Factory at Wayara Oaza Kasugai-Gun, Aichi-Ken, Japan. This gun was manufactured in October 1943 (Showa 18.10) and is serial number 7014..
This Japanese 7.7mm MG, Model 99 squad light machine gun was obtained by Cpl. Anson R. Cooke, USMC while serving with Marine Air Group 21 of the 4th Marine Air Division on Guam sometime before MAG-21 departed the island for home in March 1946. This war souvenir had been used by the Japanese during the recapture of Guam in August 1944. According to the accompanying Registration Form 4467, Cpl. Cooke recovered and boxed the weapon, mailing it to his home in Groveland, Mass. early in 1946. Sometime after his discharge from the Marine Corps, Cooke registered the gun with the Federal Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Commission and it has been in his possession ever since then.
The battle to retake Guam lasted from July 21, 1944 to Aug. 10, 1944. The Japanese defenders numbered about 22,000 men under the command of Lt. Gen. Takeshi Takshina. Imperial forces included most of the 29th Infantry Division deployed from China in February 1944 (less the 18th Infantry Regiment lost in transit), 48th Independent Mixed Brigade, 10th Independent Mixed Regiment along with a naval infantry detachment from the 54th Keibitai. The American invasion force comprised the 3rd Marine Division, 77th Infantry Division, and 1st Marine Provisional Brigade. The island was declared recaptured on August 8, 1944 after a short, but typically brutal battle that cost the Japanese over 18,000 casualties and the Americans 7,700 men, including over 1,700 killed.
Marine Airgroup 21 (MAG-21) was a follow-on unit that had been formed in 1922. MAG-21's squadrons had already seen extensive Pacific combat at Wake Island, Midway, and Guadalcanal. On Guam, MAG-21 took over the rebuilt Orote Peninsula airstrip captured by the 1st Marine Provisional Brigade. Orote became home to the Marine 217th, 225th, 321st, and 534th (Night Fighter) Squadrons flying Corsairs and Hellcats in support of B-29 operations until the end of the war. MAG-21 was deactivated in April 1947 (reactivated in 2000). Parenthetically, one of the last Japanese holdouts from the war, Sergeant Shoichi Yokoi, emerged from a cave on Guam on January 24, 1972, twenty-seven years after the surrender.
Condition: Excellent. Missing magazine. 43 inches overall length.