Posted by R. Berg on April 10, 2001
In Reply to: "No sirree, Bob!" posted by Ed on April 10, 2001
: Anyone have an idea about the history of this?
From Eric Partridge, "A Dictionary of Catch Phrases American and British":
"no sir!" and "no sir(r)ee!" with emphasis on -ree. This emphatic US negative, recorded in Thornton [R. H. Thornton, "American Glossary," 1912] for 1847 and prob. going back at least a decade, became, c. 1920, an English catch phrase, still used occ.