Where did, "I call shotgun" come from?

If you have ever stopped everything you were doing and asked yourself- "where did the term- I call shot gun come from?"  I bring this up because I still have a buddy who STILL yells- "I call shotgun" when we go somewhere together.  I thought "calling shotgun" died with alien face pendants in 1989.  Yes, that was a tragic loss. 

The origin of this phrase, "I call shotgun",  takes place in the Old West, although no one actually called it “shotgun” back then. Carriage drivers would often bring along someone to sit next to them and carry a weapon, usually a shotgun. These co-pilots acted as bodyguards and warded off any robbers or miscreants who got in their way. 

So next time your annoying friend "calls shotgun", ask them "are you going to be my bodygaurd?"


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