My Government Model and me.


March 16, 2013, 04:42 PM
In 1976 I was running a small tavern. No hard liquor, we sold beer and wine. Had some pool tables and on Fridays and Saturdays there was live music and dancing. For the most part it was a quiet little club, but I was in the habit of carrying my Colt Series '70 in my waistband under my shirttail in what was called the "Mexican Carry." No, it's not the smartest way to pack a gun, but we did a lot of things back then that weren't real smart. I had bought the gun in February of 1973. I still have it.

One Saturday night about 30 bikers lined up their choppers in front of the building and came in to party. They were wearing "cuts" with the club name and logo but for the life of me I can't recall the name of the club. You'd think that I would remember that sort of thing but after all these years I don't.

Things went OK for the first couple hours, until the bikers had enough beer (and whiskey they were sneaking in) to start acting crazy. They bullied everyone not a club member out of the bar and began acting like it was their private clubhouse. I took the president aside and asked him to keep his people under control and his response to shrug and walk away. I thought maybe some police presence might calm them down but the phone was dead. The next day I discovered that one of them had cut the phone line outside the building. This was long before cell phones so we (the bartender and I were the only ones there) were on our own.

I was carrying my usual Government Model 45 and the bartender packed a Colt Combat Commander 45 (that I had given him). Behind the bar was a short Mossberg pump 12 gauge. We decided that if they seriously came over the bar at us we likely couldn't stop them but we figured to take as many with us as possible. This was not bravado, just realization of the situation. If 30 guys were determined to get us, even if they didn't have any firearms... which I was not so sure about... they would get us if they were willing to accept some casualties in the process.

As things deteriorated further with the bikers' behavior, I asked the bartender to slip out the back and find a phone. I guess the smart thing would have been to abandon the club to them and get out with our lives, but I was young and a little foolish and I never was much for running from bullies.

A couple minutes later the bartender returned. He later told me a neighbor let him use her phone and the cops came in the front door as he sneaked in the back. He said the dispatcher told him at first that it would take 30 minutes to get an officer to the location. He told her that he didn't think we had 30 minutes and that we might have to start shooting them. She asked in a horrified voice if we had guns and he told her that we were armed and we were feeling threatened. "Don't shoot them!" she shouted over the phone. "Then get some cops here, quick," he told her. It worked. Units arrived within three to four minutes of the call. Like I said, they arrived at the same time the bartender got back.

Half a dozen uniformed officers came in the front door and the effect was startling and immediate. The place fell silent and raucous bikers ceased their boisterous behavior. After a few uneasy moments with the officers just standing there staring down the bikers, and the club members standing around looking a bit sheepish, the cyclists shuffled out the door and were gone. I could hear the Harleys retreating down the street in a pack.

I nodded to cop who seemed to be in charge and thanked him for dropping by. "Not a problem," he grunted.

This is the Colt I was carrying that night. We had several other adventures together, and not all ended this well. Showing the effects of 40 years of use, last year I decided to have the gun engraved and refinished. The ivory stocks and S&W sights (that was the hot set up back then) were already on it 1976.

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March 16, 2013, 04:47 PM
Great story, beautiful gun. The engraving really makes it stand out. Thanks.

March 16, 2013, 05:10 PM
Great story. If you have children and grandchildren print that story and put in a safe place so it will stay with the gun as it gets handed down.

March 16, 2013, 07:30 PM

March 16, 2013, 10:31 PM
You made the right choices that night, for you and the bikers! Beautiful pistol and rig!

March 16, 2013, 11:33 PM
I loved the 5 minutes I spent with you bro....:)

March 17, 2013, 12:02 AM
I'd like to hear some of the other stories, (but ony if you don't mind sharing them).

This story was great by the way, thank you for it.

March 17, 2013, 12:12 AM
Super story and that's one great looking Colt Government! There's just something about an engraved gun that's been blued; looks fanatstic. Of course the ivory grips are icing on the cake. Thanks for sharing both the memories and the gun.

March 17, 2013, 04:19 AM
That was good reading. Thanks for sharing!

March 17, 2013, 07:56 AM
Thanks for sharing that Saxon.

March 18, 2013, 03:12 AM
There is nothing not to like about that whole set up and the story.

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