Sunday, March 20, 2011

Plight of Terry Cemetery garners statewide interest

It's not a "done deal," but the historic Terry Cemetery appears to have dodged the bullet -- at least for the moment.  The 1.3 acre cemetery is within an expansion area that Wharf Resources hopes to mine for gold over the next few years. 

The South Dakota Board of Minerals and Environment last Thursday (3/17/11) voted to include the cemetery on a list of "Special, Exceptional, Critical or Unique Lands," effectively protecting the cemetery from disturbance by Wharf -- at least until the Board makes a final determination, and that decision may not come for several months.

The cemetery lies adjacent to State Highway 473 about three miles west of Lead on the way to the Terry Peak Lodge and Wharf Resources, but it is hidden from motorists by a wooded hill.

Wharf's plans have attracted considerable media attention, and a story written by veteran capitol reporter Bob Mercer has found ink across the state from Aberdeen and Mitchell to Pierre and Spearfish.

One of the more recent stories regarding the embattled cemetery appeared in the Pierre Capitol Journal last Friday (3/18/11), and you can read it here.  The story was headlined,  "Wharf Official says Terry Cemetery won't be mined."