Deadwood, South Dakota Considers Repeal of Fortune-Telling Ban

January 29th, 2014 § 0 comments

For the past twenty years, psychics, card readers, and other mystics have been prohibited from carrying on business in the small town of Deadwood, South Dakota.

That might soon change, however, as the Deadwood City Commission considers repealing what the town’s mayor describes as an ‘antiquated’ law.

As it stands, the present ordinance states,

“A. No person shall advertise or engage in or carry on any business of telling fortunes, carrying on a business advertising or involving a cult or psychics powers, facilities or forces, clairvoyants, spirits, mediumship, seership, prophesy, astrology, palmistry, necromancy, or other craft, science cards, tellsman, charms, potions, magnetism or magnetized articles or substances, oriental mysteries or magic of any kind or nature or numerology, or engage in any of these businesses within the city limits.

B. The provisions of this section shall not be construed to include, prohibit or interfere with the exercise of any religious or spiritual function of any priest, minister, rector or an accredited representative of any bona fide church or religion.section 5.52.010

The provisions do however, interfere with the Deadwood Chamber & Visitor Bureau’s ability to market ghost tours, psychic fairs, and other mystical events in their historically fascinating little town.

“I think we have a lot of hauntings in Deadwood that people would be interested in”, chamber events coordinator Sarah Anderson is reported as saying by

Two hotels in town have already been featured on paranormal television shows and the Bureau would like to be able to encourage more business of that sort.

Some residents, however, are opposed to the idea, and the local ministerial association will be asked to offer their comments at the next public meeting to be held on February 3rd.

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