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When the Northern Pacific Railroad announced plans to build a line through the region in 1882, work began on the establishment of Hope. The small town draws its name from veterinarian, Dr. Hope, who treated the railroad’s hardworking horses.

Although a post office began operating in the town in 1887, it wasn’t until 1896 that the town was platted, and it waited until 1903 before being officially incorporated. The town has boasted a relatively stable population of just a handful of residents and is best known for David Thompson’s Kullyspell House. Thompson founded the site on Hope Peninsula as Idaho’s first trading post in 1809, and a memorial outside town commemorates his numerous accomplishments.

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