Builders find iconic WWII submachine gun hidden under roof
Builders in Tarnów have uncovered an iconic WWII submachine gun while renovating an old roof.
Lying undisturbed for over 70 years, the German-made MP-40 was found in near perfect condition during work on a tenement house alongside its magazine and several dozen rounds of ammunition.
Popularly known as a Schmeisser, the weapon is thought to have belonged to a member of Poland’s WWII resistance movement.
During WWII Tarnów was a stronghold of resistance to Germany’s occupation.
Developed in Nazi Germany, the weapon’s advanced features made it a favourite among soldiers and continued to be popular globally after the war ended.
The CIA and MI6 are reported to have supplied anti-communist forces around the world with limited numbers of MP40s, and Norway had the submachine gun in its arsenal until 1990.
The gun reached cult status after being used by actors Richard Burton and Clint Eastward in the 1968 classic WWII film Where Eagles Dare.
Commenting on the discovery, a police spokesman said: “The MP-40 submachine gun was discovered during renovation under a roof.
“Construction workers dismantling the roof of a tenement house in the city centre found the wrapped gun on one of the beams next to the magazine and cartridges.”
Prosecutors will now whether the weapon should be destroyed or handed over to a local museum.
The discovery comes just five months after another MP-40 submachine gun was found in an old house a few miles away in the village of Biadoliny Radłowskie.
In October, a man who had bought the derelict house to renovate stumbled across the gun hidden under old maps in a utility room.