TUESDAY TRIVIA: Origin of the Phrase ‘Riding Shotgun’

When several people are going to get into a car for a trip, one might exclaim, “I get shotgun!”

The exclamation, “I get shotgun!”, which refers to sitting in the passenger seat next to the driver is short for the phrase “riding shotgun.”

Though it refers to instances during the Old West, when stagecoaches were a means of transportation, it didn’t originate during that time. It’s use started in movies and TV shows about the Old West, according to several sources.

Pony Express drivers carried shotguns to protect themselves and sometimes a guard armed with a shotgun would ride next to the driver to protect him from robbers, wild animals or Indians.