or bust

Also found in: Idioms.
or collapse from the effort; - used in phrases expressing determination to do something; as, Oregon or bust, meaning "We will get to Oregon or die trying."

See also: bust

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, published 1913 by G. & C. Merriam Co.
References in classic literature ?
By and by I says to myself, I can't live this way; I'm a-going to find out who it is that's here on the island with me; I'll find it out or bust. Well, I felt better right off.
The piecing of the bust in three separately carved sections--circular socle, name plate and the bust proper, all of which are of the same marble type--differs from the early-modern technique, in which the socle and name plate or bust and plate are regularly carved as one.