Mother Lode

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Mother Lode,

belt of gold-bearing quartz veins, central Calif., along the western foothills of the Sierra Nevada. The term is sometimes limited to a strip c.70 mi (110 km) long and from 1 to 6 1-2 mi (1.6–10.5 km) wide, running NW from Mariposa. Popularly it is used to mean the gold-bearing area E of the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers and W of the Sierra Nevada. The discovery of alluvial gold on the South Fork of the American River led to the 1848 gold rush. Mark TwainTwain, Mark,
pseud. of Samuel Langhorne Clemens,
1835–1910, American author, b. Florida, Mo. As humorist, narrator, and social observer, Twain is unsurpassed in American literature.
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 and Bret HarteHarte, Bret
(Francis Brett Harte) , 1836–1902, American writer of short stories and humorous verse, b. Albany, N.Y. At 19 he went to California, where he tried his hand at teaching, clerking, and mining.
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 helped make the Mother Lode famous.

mother lode

[′məth·ər ‚lōd]
A main unit of mineralized matter that may not have economic value but to which workable veins are related.

Mother Lode

name applied to gold-mining region of California. [Am. Hist.: Hart, 569]
References in periodicals archive ?
The dreadful Sharpeville massacre in South Africa in 1960, is an event indelibly etched on my memories of growing up in that country - indeed, as a young boy, I remember helping my mother load food parcels for families in Sharpeville,' said Mr Hain.
The online mega-market facilitator is, as anticipated, making moves to leverage its organic community of buyers and sellers into the mother load of potential revenues.
Instead, the Manitoban quintet specializes in a bluesy brand of old-timey folk music, and injects that traditional mother load with a youthful spirit.
LAS VEGAS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--March 29, 1996--Sigma Trimm Technologies, a leading manufacturer of peripheral enclosures, will introduce the Mother Load, its new series of mass storage devices for video, Internet Web server and other data-intensive applications during Networld+Interop '96 in Booth 5881.
Enclosed in Sigma Trimm's Very Large Disk Array, or Velda, the Mother Load is fully integrated and available with either full, half-high or SCA drive modules.
Users purchase disk drives separately, allowing the Mother Load to be customized to specific applications.
Alexander, as Vice President of Capital Finance, Director and founding partner in the ABM Gold Corporation (a Vancouver public company), a gold exploration and development company operating in the California gold belt named the Mother Load.