Arizona Blue-Gunfighter

The Barber Shop
& Chickamauga

[Chapter Three to Mexican Stand-off]

Blue had two guns he always carried. One a belt gun, keep snug up against his belly, a 1860 .44 caliber Colt Army revolver and a matching holster cut down to create a powerful but concealable belt weapon; and his sidearm, a Colt .45 single-action, l880’s model–which he got when they first came out in ’84. His .44 he got while serving in the Army during the Civil War Best barbershop

He was a soldier from 1860-to-l865 and fought at the battle of Chickamauga. As Blue sat in the barber’s chair, and the barber started to cut his hair, his mind went back to those army days. The barber stopped for a second to sharpen the raiser for his cut and shave, and then went back to cutting his hair.

He sometimes had old memories–flashbacks–of the battle at Chickamauga. It would bring him to having bad sweats. It was in Virginia his Company of one-hundred and sixty men had to march into many houses to inform the residents they were about to burn them out of their homes. Their faces were horrifying. It was one thing to kill a man on a belief they were fighting a war for the country they lived in, but to burn a person out of his whole life in front of him, especially if he was in his 50s or 60s, was against most anyone’s values.

–It was in August of l861, Blue was just a young man back then. Blue was with his friend Smiley, he was a good man he recalled. Said Blue to the Barber:

“Watch the razor!”

Then Blue started to relive the battle again:

“‘Smiley, he was a good man, soldier. I got him out of trouble. I was just a kid. I thought the world was coming to an end. Smiley didn’t make it to Gettysburg, but he did to Chickamauga, sure enough, with me. Too bad I lost track of Smile when I, I got assigned to go to Gettysburg…with–I just lost track of Smiley. I never could find him afterwards. Maybe he’s dead. In any case, Locust Gap, yaw, we marched into that didn’t we, sure did and took the damn train from there. Then word comes back while on the train, we were headed for Kentucky.

“On the train, Smiley was caught in-between two soldiers, I remember now. He wasn’t a fighter you know. I came along and asked if they wanted to test me out. Smiley was as happy as a hog to see me. He said to the two guys: ‘You’re not so brave now are yaw!’ The two knew I wasn’t a bluffer, yaw, that’s right, and decided to leave well enough alone. Smiley and I walk to another car, no sense in provoking trouble.

“Smiley got a hit [flesh wound] at the battle of Shiloh, I again was lucky, as always. But Chickamauga was different. It was a big fight. The bloodiest fight I had ever seen. I wish I had known Lola back then, I needed some comforting. If ever I thought I was going to die, and had an ounce of fear I didn’t want, it was then.

For some reason, winter always scared me since then. It was the only time of year I wanted to be safe and sound. Have a warm place–you know. Not take cold baths in the river, like at Chickamauga Creek, things like that stick with you for a life time.””

“You say something Mister Blue?” asked the barber.

“I must have been dreaming out loud.” Said Blue.

“You mentioned Chickamauga, I lost a brother there.” Said the barber.

“Is that what I said, yaw,” said Blue, adding “and I lost my youth there,” and then closed his eyes again.

War is war not matter what thought Blue. It is the battles you remember. The area was big–a few miles each way; he was now starting to relive it again: “North to South, and East to West. Smiley and I fought up and down the area. We came in, us Yankees on the 18th, the confederates, were already there. When the fight began, we fought for two days in the woods, straight; cedar ticket was dense, like my hair back then. Bullets were flying every which way. It seemed to be hitting every leave in every tree. You can hear them wheeze by you, y




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