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The Mle 1914 Hotchkiss machine gun chambered for the 8mm Lebel cartridge became the standard machine gun of the French Army during World War I. It was manufactured by the French arms company Hotchkiss et Cie, which had been established in the 1860s by American industrialist Benjamin B. Hotchkiss. The gas-actuated Hotchkiss system was first formulated in 1895 by Odkolek von Ujezda and improved into its final form by Hotchkiss armament engineers Laurence Benét and Henri Mercié.
The Mle 1914 followed the Mle 1909—which saw service with British and American forces—and was the last of version of the original Mle 1897. It replaced the St. Étienne Mle 1907 as France's standard machine gun.
All gunner positions on the Saint-Chamond use the Hotchkiss, although the front gun may be used instead by the driver on the Standoff package.