Pikes Peak, named after explorer Zebulon Pike, lost its apostrophe in 1891. That was the year that the newly formed U.S. Board on Geographic Names outlawed this seemingly innocent mark of punctuation: "The possessive form using an 's' is allowed," declared the Board, "but the apostrophe is almost always removed."
Some would be quite happy to broaden the ban on that "morbid growth in English orthography," as linguist Steven Byington characterized the mark. Writing in American Speech in 1945, he observed that "the language would be none the worse for its abolition." . . .
For the complete article (revised and expanded), see Should the Apostrophe Be Abolished?