May 5, 1919
World War 1 Whippet Tank on square May 5, 1919 on Victory Loan Campaign at Shippensburg, Pa.
The Medium Tank Mk A (also known as the "Whippet") was an armored vehicle specifically designed to exploit breaches in the battle lines created by heavier lozenge-shaped combat tanks such as the Mark 1 series. The Whippet went on to become the most successful British tank of the war and was used to spearhead assaults, going on to cause many German casualties in the process. Designer William Tritton was an expert in designing agriculture and was assigned to work with Major Walter Gordon Wilson in producing a "caterpillar tracked" vehicle for transporting large naval guns. While working on the project, they saw a separate but equal military application of the tractor and were credited with the invention of the Medium Tank Mk A (Whippet). A prototype (interestingly with a revolving turret emplacement borrowed from an Austin armored car design) was made ready in February of 1917 and underwent evaluations thereafter. An order of 200 was placed March of 1917 to which the system was delivered for operational service of that year. At a later date, Tritton would go on to design the notable mark 1 thru Mark V series of heavy tanks for the war effort