Maverick

“Maverick” was the Word of the Day from Merriam-Webster. Interesting word. Depending on your age it might bring to mind the famous 1950s television show starring James Garner. Or perhaps the 1986 movie “Top Gun” in which “Maverick” was the call sign of Naval Aviator Pete “Maverick” Mitchell (played by Tom Cruise). Or perhaps the 1994 movie, a father-son sequel to the television show – with James Garner as the dad and Mel Gibson as his son. Or any other number of items.

But do you know the origin of the word? Merriam Webster posted:

When a client gave Samuel A. Maverick 400 cattle to settle a $1,200 debt, the 19th-century south Texas lawyer had no use for them, so he left the cattle unbranded and allowed them to roam freely (supposedly under the supervision of one of his employees). Neighboring stockmen recognized their opportunity and seized it, branding and herding the stray cattle as their own. Maverick eventually recognized the folly of the situation and sold what was left of his depleted herd, but not before his name became synonymous with such unbranded livestock. By the end of the 19th century, the term maverick was being used to refer to individuals who prefer to blaze their own trails.

Now you know…!

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