Hope, BC, incorporated as a district municipality in 1992, population 5969 (2011c), 6185 (2006c). The District of Hope is located on the Trans-Canada Highway, 150 km east of VANCOUVER where it sits on the east bank of the FRASER RIVER, surrounded on three sides by mountains. The junction of the Trans-Canada, Coquihalla and the transprovincial Highway No 3 (Crowsnest Highway) makes Hope the gateway to the interior.
Hope was established 1848-49 as a Hudson's Bay Company post at the western end of its Brigade Trail from Fort Kamloops (see KAMLOOPS), and was so named in the hope that this trail would provide an all-British route between forts Kamloops and LANGLEY.
A townsite was laid out by the Royal Engineers in 1858 during the rush for gold on the nearby sandbars of the Fraser (see FRASER RIVER GOLD RUSH). Christ Church (1861) is the oldest church still on its original site in the province and a national historic site (designated 1994). In 1860 Edgar Dewdney opened the first pack trail, the DEWDNEY TRAIL, to the east. Hope became a station on the Canadian Pacific Railway mainline in 1886 but its further growth awaited the advent of automobile traffic. Hope was incorporated as a village in 1929 and a town in 1965. In 1992 the town of Hope amalgamated with 2 adjacent rural areas to form the District of Hope.
Today forestry, tourism and the service sector are the district's economic bases. Mining for gold, nickel and copper was important until the last mine closed in 1984. Local attractions are the Hope Slide (1965), the Coquihalla Canyon, Othello Tunnels of the Kettle Valley Railway and the wilderness of Manning Provincial Park. Hope is at the western entrance to the COQUIHALLA HIGHWAY, although it is bypassed by the highway itself.