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Leadville soon to be home to memorial that pays homage to buried Irish miners

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Courtesy: Mark De La Torre / Irish Network Colorado
Leadville, CO will soon be home to a memorial honoring Irish miners who are buried in shallow, unmarked graves.. This is an artist’s rendering of what the memorial will look like.

Tomorrow is St. Patrick’s Day, a day for many to celebrate, drink beer and partake in some green cuisine. But, of course, the holiday is about so much more than just fun, parties and parades. St. Patrick's Day observes the death of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland and is also about celebrating Irish culture overall.

In Colorado, part of honoring the legacy of the Irish community is tied to Leadville, a former silver mining town that lies near the headwaters of the Arkansas River in the heart of the Rocky Mountains.

Leadville will be home to a memorial being developed to recognize the nearly 3,000 members of the Irish community buried in unmarked, sunken graves in the Catholic Pauper section of Evergreen Cemetery, most of whom were Irish immigrants.

We spoke with Ireland-based sculpture artist Terry Brennan and Lisa Switzer, president of the Irish Network Colorado.