Trinket hunters blamed for targeting ghost town cemetery in southern B.C.

By The Canadian Press
May 26, 2017 - 11:05am

COALMONT, B.C. — Someone is digging holes in the cemetery of a southern British Columbia ghost town and a member of the local historical society believes it’s the work of misguided treasure hunters.

Bob Sterne has tended the cemetery of the long-abandoned former gold rush town of Granite Creek for more than a decade and says he was surprised to find 16 holes when he checked the site earlier this week.

The holes were all located in the area where Chinese miners were buried at the turn of the 20th century and Sterne says he believes they were dug by people using metal detectors to search for trinkets.

He says this is the third time someone has tried to dig into some of the 133 marked graves of the cemetery, located about 300 kilometres east of Vancouver.

The cemetery is part of a designated heritage site commemorating what was one of the oldest communities in the Colony of British Columbia, and Sterne says the grave robbing attempts are disrespectful and disturbing.

Sterne says it’s possible many of the remains from the Chinese section were removed more than 50 years ago, during provincial efforts to repatriate the bodies to China. 

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