It is a word spoken millions of times a day around the world, but what are its origins? A book by Allen Metcalf, entitled OK: The Improbable Story of America’s Greatest Word, states that the word can be traced back to a Boston Morning Post newsroom. On March 23, 1839 these words appeared:
The “Chairman of the Committee on Charity Lecture Bells,” is one of the deputation, and perhaps if he should return to Boston, via Providence, he of the Journal, and his train-band, would have the “contribution box,” et ceteras, o.k. —all correct—and cause the corks to fly, like sparks, upward.
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