The Bright Hope Lode (Lode: A rich source or supply) was
discovered in the late 1870's by a prospector by the name of J. M. Lineham while exploring
an area known as the Eureka Mining Zone west of Kelsey’s Diggings California. The lode and
the resulting Bright Hope Mine offered its discoverer a “Bright Hope” for his and his
The lode was believed to be an extension of gold discoverer James Marshal’s Gray Eagle and Big
Sandy mines, which were just south of town. The town of Kelsey or Kelsey’s Diggings (also known
as Winterville, later Slatington, and now Kelsey) was the site of Marshal’s blacksmith shop and was
considered in its heyday one of the rowdiest mining camps in California’s Mother Lode.
The mine may have been purchased in 1886 by the publisher of the Georgetown Gazette (considered by
some to be California's oldest newspaper) Horace Hulbert, who, like many of his day in the
gold country, was also a prospector and miner. An interesting note was that in the late 1800’s
the use of templates printed by major newspapers was common among small town papers.
The templates (containing state and national news) were shipped to the local paper, which
filled around the borders and in specific places with local ads, news and items of interest
and then sold them as their own. Horace Hulbert, like Bright Hope Designs, did not use templates
for his papers.
Additional facts: The area around Kelsey was the site of the 5th gold strike in the Mother Lode.
Kelsey experienced several gold rushes, 1850’s, 1880’s, 1910, and the last in 1930. The Eureka
Slate Mine, one time the world’s largest producer of blackboard and roofing slate, opened in
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