Step 1Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Step 2Sift the flour, baking soda and baking powder together into a large bowl. Add the salt, two-thirds cup sugar, and the cornmeal to the bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until combined.
Step 3Add the butter and cut in with a pastry cutter or 2 dinner knives, until it is the size of small peas. Using the spoon, mix in the cherries. Make a well in the center and add the buttermilk. Mix briefly, just until the ingredients come together; some loose flour should remain at the bottom of the bowl. The dough will be stiff and slightly sticky. Let the batter stand for 5 minutes.
Step 4Gently shape the dough into balls about 2 1/4 inches in diameter and place them on the prepared pans about 2 inches apart.
Step 5Sprinkle the remaining sugar on top of the scones. Place the scones on the middle rack and immediately turn the oven temperature down to 375 degrees. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the scones are golden. Transfer the scones to a wire rack and cool.