What's in a Name: Gypsum

This ongoing series explores the origins of Colorado's interesting names.

July 28 2014, 1:00 PM

—Image courtesy of the town of Gypsum

Image Courtesy of Shutterstock

Usage: Gypsum is a mountain town in Eagle County.

Pronunciation: "jip-sum"

Word Origin: Latin, for chalk

Namesake: Gypsum is a mineral used as a plaster in drywall. Coincidentally, it is found throughout Colorado and the Rocky Mountain region, including (you guessed it) Eagle County. Today, a wallboard plant still gathers the area's gypsum.

From the Archives: “Would it surprise you to wake up some morning and find the town of Gypsum a booming mining camp? Well it won’t be long until this will be in evidence. The much despised, much cursed, gypsum of the valley from which it takes its name will soon be a mineral product of Eagle County.” —Eagle Valley Enterprise, Friday, November 10, 1905

Local's Take: "The town of Gypsum was incorporated in 1911. From 1911 to 1990 you had to wonder why the town was called Gypsum. Then they built the wallboard plant, which kind of lends credibility to the name." —Gypsum town manager, Jeff Shroll

Local historian and archivist for the Eagle Library District, Jaci Spuhler, provided histrical information for this piece.