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Ben Sauter, a character, in his own words

Some history; our farm and neighborhood

I was born on a 51 acre farm later known as 2802 N. Rolling Rd. [Baltimore County, Maryland]. The farm took up the 2700 & 2800 block of N. Rolling Rd. on the west side. Beautiful gently rolling country.

Sauter farm, Hebbville, Maryland.
Sauter farm, Hebbville, Maryland
Pop was born in the upper right bedroom. Location is Hebbville, not Randallstown.
(Photo from Randallstown News, Apr 16 1986)

The area was called Hebbville the center of which is Rolling & Windsor Mill Rd. From that point Hebbville extends about 1 1/2 miles in circumference [radius, no doubt.]

Map of Hebbville, 1857.
Map of Hebbville, 1857, showing early Sauters
(1) Hebbville (then called White Grounds)
Rolling Road comes down from Hebbville. Farm location shown in green.
(2) Woodlawn (then called Powhatan)

It got its name from a Dr. Hebb who tended Union soldiers who were camped at Union Woods which is now Security Square mall.

The neighborhood was settled by German immigrants right after the Civil War. Baltimore was a port of entry. Some people think New York was the only port of entry. No No.

The immigrants who wanted country life came to Balto because it was close to farm land. Later people referred to them as Pa Dutch. No, No, they were right from Germany.

These new folks bought land, mostly 10 acres to ninety acres. They would try to eke out a living by intensive farming - corn, tomatoes, beans, asparagus, rhubarb, pears, apples, cherries. They all kept a cow and a mule or horse. They would run to Balto. [City] once a week with their produce. They all had one cow.

A cow is a wonderful thing for providing food. Out of her comes whole milk, skimmed milk, buttermilk, butter and shmearcase.

People on farms made out much better than others during the great depression. I remember walking to school seeing smoke come out of every chimney, people burning whatever they could find to burn.

Houses were few and far between, so everyone knew each other. We never called adults Mr. or Mrs. It was always Aunt or Uncle or Cousin so and so. I was about 12 before I knew that wasn't blood between a lot of these folks and myself.

When I was 8, the farm next to ours was being sold at a tax sale. I remember standing in their kitchen right beside the auctioneer, just amazed. Here were these nice people, down the road because the father was a drunk.

Although I was 8, I learned a very profound lesson; that alcohol is a horrible task master.

My father's farm had cows, a bull, hogs, horses and chickens.

Hogs are a good source of food. You get hams, shoulders, chops, pigs' feet, scrapple, sausage, liver, heart, kidneys, brains and lard.

I have often thanked The Lord for letting me be born in such a delightful place around such pleasant people.


Contact Ben's fifth kid: send an email; view guestbook; sign guestbook.
Back to Donald Sauter's main page.

Understand that Baltimore County and Baltimore City share borderlines, but they are completely separate geopolitical entities. Neither is "in" or "a part of" the other.

Here's a more researched account of 19th century German immigration to the Hebbville area. There were actually two waves of German immigration, one starting in 1816, and then a "full tide" in the years 1850-1861. The first Sauters in the area, Christian and Barbara, moved to their farm on Windsor Mill Road in 1822. The deed was in German. It's labeled on the 1857 map above as "Mrs. Sauter". The map also shows the properties of their two sons, Christian, Jr., and Julius. In both of those cases, "Sauter" is misspelled, but it's definitely us.

The map, and this history, comes from "Woodlawn, Franklintown and Hebbville; Three Communities--Two Centuries" by The Woodlawn History Committee (Mike Drass, et al), 1977. An excellent job! It also includes an 1850 map and an 1863 military map showing Sauters.

Our family attended the same Emmart's Methodist Church shown on the NW corner of Dogwood and Rolling Roads. It was built in 1855. Back then, it had a slave gallery. Sauters were not among the few slaveholders in the area.

There were no Civil War battles in the area, but there is a claim that Union Woods got its name after "Union troops chased Confederates out of the woods from which they had been raiding local farms for three days."

You may not have heard of Woodlawn, Baltimore County, Maryland, but Woodlawn has heard of you. The Social Security Administration, which is the largest government agency outside of the D.C. area, set up its operation in Woodlawn in the early 1960s.

As far as I know, Ben's Run, seen in the upper left of the map, is no relation.

Helpful keywords not in the main text: pennsylvania dutch; smearcase.