Armour in Canadian service: M3 Lee and Grant tank

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3607879)

M3 Grant medium tank in the UK. The turret was produced in two forms, one for US needs and one modified to British requirements to place the radio next to the commander. In British Commonwealth service, the tank was called by two names: tanks employing US pattern turrets were called "Lee", named after Confederate general Robert E. Lee, while those with British pattern turrets were known as "Grant", named after Union general Ulysses S. Grant.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3608071)

M3 Lee medium tank.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3223022)

Major-General E.W. Sansom inspecting the M3 Lee tanks of the British Columbia Dragoons, Headley Down, England, 12 March 1942.

(UK, Historical Photographs and Prints)

Canadian troops with M3 Lee tanks in England, 21 Feb 1942.  Note the combination of US and Canadian crash helmets, and the various states of the crew's coveralls.  The caption for the photo reads, "A Canadian Armoured Division are finishing their training in this country equipped with American M-3 Medium Tanks manufactured in Detroit.  The performance of these tanks is thoroughly tested by Army Officers before they leave the factory."

At the time, American industry was unable to build a turret large enough to house the 75-mm gun, so the side mount was a compromise.  By late 1942 that problem had been solved with the M4 Sherman.

(Author Photos)

M3 Lee Medium Tank (Serial No. 3714). Canadian War Museum, Ottawa, Ontario.