TAZEWELL CO., Va. — They call it "God's Thumbprint." Sitting high inside a mountian basin from the remains of an ancient seabed, Burkes Garden has a population of less than two hundred. They live in relative isolation, with little cell phone service and not even a post office or school. But retired doctor Bill Jurgelski is not alone; he has nearly fifty two humped Mongolian camels on his Lost World Ranch.
"The camels in my opinion come from a lost world," says Dr. Jurgelski. "And this in many ways is a lost world, Burke's Garden."
Dr. Jurgelksi came from New Jersey to Tazewell Co. and Richlands as a locum tenens doctor in an emergency room, filling in where he was needed. When he decided to retire he didn't go the normal route of taking up fishing or restoring an old car. After growing up on a farm, he wanted to raise llamas. But when he first started looking at llamas, one rancher had two camels, and the doctor fell in love.