Potentially worth billions of dollars, the site has been a subject of controversy ever since a Canadian company learned the geology of the area is similar to that of mines it already operates and began to pursue the right to exploit it.
Environmentalists and many locals objected, and in 1983, Virginia legislators placed a ban on the mining of uranium in the state.
On November 5, the long-running dispute will make its way to the U.S. Supreme Court, where justices will be asked to decide whether the state has the right to block resource development it finds objectionable or has overstepped its authority.
In addition to the mining firm, those opposing the state ban include the Coles family, which owns the land on which the uranium deposit lies.
Walter Coles Sr., the patriarch of the family and CEO of Virginia Energy Resources, said his family has owned the land at the center of the controversy since 1785.
For the most of the years since then, the land has been used for tobacco and subsistence farming, and Coles said his family members that settled the land persevered “in what was more or a less a desolate part of the country at that point and time.”
But when Canadian geologists from the Marline Corporation realized the geology of the Coles' land matched that of uranium-rich soil to the north, they came to town, armed with helicopters and Geiger counters, and began to collect rock samples for testing.
But that's not to say their activity caused much excitement among the landowners. Coles, who was away from the land at the time, said his family members saw the discovery of riches beneath their feet and simply one more chapter in a long saga.
“We’d been here for generations,” he said in an interview with Courthouse News. “This was just one step forward.”
But before the Coles and their Canadian benefactors could begin the process of removing the uranium from the ground, state legislators intervened.
Retired state Senator John Watkins, who supported the development of the mine, recalled that when the question of developing the mine came before him and his colleagues in the Virginia General Assembly, "they just didn't want it."
The 1983 moratorium includes a provision stating it will remain in place, "until a program for permitting uranium mining is established by statute.”
Cole all but abandoned attempts to reverse the General Assembly's decision until 2013, when the market for uranium started to heat up.
Once again, however, a majority of state lawmakers opposed the mine proposal.
In doing so, many of them cited a 2012 study by the National Academy of Sciences that concluded mining faced "steep hurdles" that mining proponents would have to overcome if such development was ever going to come to pass.
Among these is Virginia's sparse to nonexistent regulatory history when it comes to uranium mining and processing.