Where is Lauraville
The community of Lauraville is the area bounded on the east by Harford Road, on the north by Echodale Avenue, on the west by the Herring Run Stream and the Morgan Park Community, and on the south by Argonne Drive.
Though today’s Lauraville was largely built up over the two decades between 1910 and 1930, the community has a history dating back at least from the late 18th Century.
Early settlements were sparse and limited to a scattering of farms along the Harford Road. One of the earliest community buildings in the area was a log schoolhouse- reputedly the first in Baltimore County- that stood just outside of today’s Lauraville, approximately where Echodale and Twin Oaks Avenues meet.
Traces of schoolhouse foundations remained at the site until well into this century. The schoolhouse land was owned by the Read family, who also owned quarries and in the early 1800’s built a grist mill along the Herring Run.
The Harford Road was established during Colonial Times and linked the town of Belair and the homesteads on the Gunpowder Falls with the fledgling Baltimore Town. In 1816 a turnpike company was chartered to substantially improve and maintain Harford Road for the privilege of charging tolls.
By 1818 a bridge across the Herring Run (at approximately the foot of today’s service drive down to the run) was completed, and by 1819 the turnpike was open to Gunpowder Falls.
The Hall Springs Hotel was located on the west side of Harford Road, slightly north of the bridge over the Herring Run. The hotel took its name from the nearby freshwater spring that to this day, continues to pour forth. The hotel probably dates from the early 1800’s and originally served stagecoach passengers on the turnpike. Later, it was used as a popular vacation hotel – a summer country haven from the city’s heat- though before being razed in the early 1900’s, it had become a private residence.
In the decade preceding the start of the Civil War, Lauraville began to take on the appearance of a village. In addition to the Read Mill on the Herring Run, the Green family had built a cotton mill, located on the south bank of the run, near Lake Montebello.
A new “Historic Lauraville” section of the website with info on a historic walking tour, updates from the NE History Roundtable, and more. Stay tuned!