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Hope, Alaska

Prior to gold being found in Nome or Dawson, Alaska, gold nuggets were discovered by a man named King in Resurrection Creek. A considerable number of prospectors couldn’t get to Resurrection Creek fast enough to stake their claims. Taking advantage of the situation, a community of cabins and tents popped up at the mouth of Resurrection Creek and the townspeople elected to name the new town after the youngest prospector that stepped of the next boat. The first gold rush town in Alaska was named Hope. The man’s name was Percy Hope. The town now had an official name.

In nearby Sixmile creek, prospectors also discovered gold. The new tent city was named Sunrise City. Prior to the time when Anchorage existed, Sunrise City, Hope City and the area that surrounding it grew to 3,000 people. These cities suffered all of the hardships but had all of the necessities of any other boom town of the era.

The Alaska Commercial Company built stores in both towns and both had saloons, post offices, community councils, and social halls. Hope was the first town in Alaska to have an apple tree planted. The gold was abundant. In less than two months, Robert Mathison panned 385 ounces of gold. Unfortunately, as quickly as it started, the boom faded. The town’s population was reduced to only 23 people. These days, there are only 200 residents in Hope.

The historic town of Hope has something for everybody, regardless if their interests are in sightseeing, hiking, fishing for salmon, history, photography, or prospecting. Potential prospectors can maybe fin some gold in addition to casting a fishing line towards some shimmering pink salmon. Potential prospectors should also be armed with a camera. At the Turnagain tidal flats and the Chugach Mountains Turnagain Arm tidal flats berries, mountain goats, moose, and eagles can be seen.

Prospection for gold is still going on in recreational operations on a small scale. There are some spectacular views available by driving several miles up Palmer Creek Road for some stunning views of the Resurrection Creek Valley and Turnagain Arm.

Although there are still some potential prospectors who head to Hope and Resurrection Creek in the hopes of striking it rich, many more visit the area for the beautiful of the wilderness. These people don’t want to put out the money, time of effort necessary for a hit or miss proposition. They consider gold and investment and prefer to avoid the hardship of prospecting for gold and simply prefer to purchase their investment gold.

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