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Archeological study to check for buried artifacts before N.H. veterans cemetery expands

A planned expansion at the New Hampshire State Veterans Cemetery in Boscawen must wait until an archaeological study checks for any buried Native American artifacts.

The cemetery, which opened in 1997, encompasses 104 acres, but only about 14 acres are used for burials. Officials plan to add an additional 5 or so acres in the coming years, said Michael Horne, the cemetery’s director.

As with earlier construction in the 1990s and early 2000s, the land must first be checked for any historical artifacts, and the two-year state capital budget that took effect July 1 includes $30,000 for an archaeological study. Horne said it will probably be conducted next summer, with construction tentatively set to follow in 2015.

“The budget came right down to the wire, so we couldn’t get it planned for this summer,” he said.

He said previous studies haven’t found any significant artifacts at the cemetery, “but it was just enough, based on the location and being on the riverbank above the river, that it was identified as a potential site.”

(Ben Leubsdorf can be reached at 369-3307 or or on Twitter @BenLeubsdorf.)

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