how Cypress got its name is a bit of a mystery.
The city never had many cypress trees, local historians
fact, it once was called Dairy City after its
principal residents - dairy cows.
leaders settled on the name Cypress when the city
incorporated in 1956, and legend has it that cypress
trees planted around the town's first school gave
the area its name. But in one old school photograph
unearthed by a city historian, no such trees appear.
the dairy farms are gone and Cypress, in northwest
Orange County, is an urban community striving
for a balance of industrial and residential development.
is the corporate home of several national and
international companies, shopping centers and
the Los Alamitos Race Course. The race track represents
the single-largest source of tax revenue for the
100 years ago, a traveler to the area would have
found only flat grassland, said local Cypress
the late 1890's, the area - then called Waterville
because of numerous nearby artesian wells - was
primarily an agricultural community. Sugar beets
were among the crops grown.
1895, the Cypress School District was started,
apparently named after a school built in 1887
at the corner of Moody and Ball roads.
seems to be no information on why Cypress was
the name given to the school and later to the
district - the school didn't have any trees. In
any case, once Cypress became the name of the
school district, people started calling the area
first US post office opened in 1929, and the first
railroad depot opened in 1906. In 1928, Texaco
developed a 144-acre site off Ball Road as an
oil-storage dept. The storage yard was active
until 1987, when plans began to develop the site
into the city's last large-scale housing tract.
dairy industry flourished after 1910, and at its
peak in the 1940s and 1950s, Cypress had about
1,700 people and 100,000 cows. However,
by the mid-1960s the rising cost of land in Orange
County drove the dairy industry farther inland
to places like Chino.
after a building boom in the 1960s and 1970s,
nearly all of the land in Cypress is developed.