The genuine article derives in America from Kid ‘The Real’ McCoy (real name Norman Selby) welterweight champion from 1898-1900. At first, his fighting name was Kid McCoy but he became so fed up with other boxers around America copying him and using the name Kid that he started to call himself Kid ‘The Real’ McCoy and the name, the Real McCoy stuck. Before this, a Scottish expression the real McKay was first recorded in 1856 that also meant the genuine article. It was later adopted as a slogan by Messrs G. McKay & Co. whisky distillers in Edinburgh to distinguish their whisky from imitators. Over the years, the American version has passed into the language while the original Scottish version has fallen away.