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Entries : United States Gypsum Co.
United States Gypsum Co.

United States Gypsum Co.

This leading maker of common construction materials such as wallboard and “Sheetrock” was established in Chicago in 1901. Created from a merger of several smaller operations, U.S. Gypsum started with $7.5 million in capital. Its operations around the country, which included a plant in East Chicago, Indiana, mined gypsum (hydrous calcium sulfate) and turned it into building products. By the mid-1930s, the East Chicago plant employed about 300 people. The company's annual sales rose from about $8 million in 1919 to $175 million in 1950. By the beginning of the 1960s, United States Gypsum had about 13,000 employees around the country, including over 1,000 in the Chicago area. In 1985, the company changed its name to USG Corp. By the end of the century, USG grossed about $3.6 billion in annual sales and employed some 1,200 Chicago-area residents. Facing almost 200,000 asbestos-related lawsuits, the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2001, but its sales continued to climb.