Denver was founded in 1859, during the Colorado Gold Rush, as two distinct communities, Auraria and St Charles. St Charles was renamed Denver City in 1858 after territorial governor James W. Denver; Auraria and Denver City merged in 1860 to form modern Denver.
In sports, Denver is home to the NHL's Colorado Avalanche, the NFL's Denver Broncos, MLB's Colorado Rockies, and the NBA's Denver Nuggets. Its nicknames include "The Mile-High City" (its downtown is 5286 feet above sea level), "Queen City of the Rockies," "Gateway to the Rockies," and "The Climate Capital of the World."
- Concise Dictionary of World Place-Names (Oxford 2005) p134