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November 28, 1890
Bakerton is the name of the new town that is being built up at Oak Grove school-house. It is two and a-half miles from the main line of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, by which it is connected with a branch road that joins it at Keller’s. The Washington Building and Lime Company, a corporation in which the Messrs. Baker of Maryland are largely interested, constructed the road and bought the 45 acres of land where the improvements are being made. They have opened up a large limestone quarry here and constructed four patent kilns for the burning of lime. Each week 11,000 bushels of lime are burned— about 20 car loads — which is shipped to Washington and points in Maryland. From forty to fifty men are constantly employed. A steam drill cuts the holes into the great beds of limestone, and dynamite tears the masses asunder. Horses and carts carry the broken stone to the top floor of the large building containing the kilns. Here men feed them into the iron maws, from which, two stories below, the lime is drawn and wheeled into the cars that stand right in front of the kilns. An inclined plane, to be run by steam, will shortly be put in operation, thus doing away with the horses and carts. The stone will then be drawn directly from the quarry to the kilns.
Already Bakerton is making a fair showing in a business way. There have been erected the large three-decked kiln-house; a cooper shop where five coopers turn out 200 barrels a day; a large store building, where Strider & Engle do a big general merchanidise business under the supervision of Mr. Jesse A. Engle, Jr.; seven new dwelling-houses for the use of the workmen. A tank, filled from an artesian well, supplies water to the works and the houses, and also to the school building. Bakerton is a post-office, and has three mails a day. Mr. Engle, the manager of the store, is postmaster.
Mr. S. W. Bratt is the efficient manager of the company’s business at Bakerton, and the lime turned out under his supervision is the best on the market. Every day a locomotive comes in to bring empty cars and take away the loaded ones. The road, we understand, is controlled by the company that runs the lime works. A telephone connects Bakerton with Keller station.
Every Saturday is pay day, and each week a considerable sum of money is put into circulation. Most of the employees are men from the vicinity, so the money is spent at home. The farmers of that vicinity find that Bakerton is of great benefit to them. They find ready sale for wood and almost every sort of farm product at the highest market prices. They also have the privilege of loading their wheat at this point, thus saving many miles of hauling over rough roads. Messrs. Hodges and Lemen, of this place, have been the principal wheat buyers.
As may be seen from the above, Bakerton is already a thriving place. But it is more than likely that only a beginning has been made, for there is a well-defined impression that better times are to follow. There are some persons who are so sanguine as to predict that in a couple of years more Bakerton will be a lively town of a couple thousand inhabitants. We hope it may be so.
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