“Some acreage deeds were signed by both Taney and Digges; some just by Taney with acknowledgment/agreement by his wife Eleanor (Digges) Taney. Actually, it was Eleanor's inheritance from her father and brothers that provided Taney with the original interest in the land, but married women could only hold title through their husbands, so it became Taneytown instead of Diggestown.” Read more.
On a map dated 1862, the property is identified as the Presbyterian Church parsonage. It consisted of the stone building, used for a laundry and bakery, and the existing kitchen and second floor. This section was built in 1848 by the Rev. John G. Wolff. It is believed that that stone structure is older, possibly dating back to the 1700s.
The local Presbyterian congregation, now known as Taneytown Presbyterian Church, was chartered in 1828 by the Rev. Austin Hubbard in the Baltimore Presbytery. The church, built in 1883, is still located at 30 York St. The church closed its doors in 2018.
According to an 1882 history of Carroll County, church pastor the Rev. James Williamson signed over the “house and lot in Taneytown” to church elders Rogers Birnie and Phillip Hann in 1853. In 1870 the Presbytery of Baltimore decided to sell the property and on April 1, 1871, Mr. Thomas Rudisel became the owner of 10 York Street. After Rudisel purchased the parsonage property, he deeded it his sister and her husband.
Largely untouched since a renovation in the 1950s, the home was purchased in 2017 by Chris and Sharon Tillman for a bed & breakfast inn. Undergoing a complete renovation, including all new electrical, plumbing and HVAC systems, this beautifully kept and much-loved house once again welcomes guests, friends and family to Taneytown.
We are proud to be part of such a rich history -- the house, the town, the region -- and we welcome you to become a part of Georges on York's continuing story.
— Chris and Sharon Tillman, Innkeepers
Meet the Georges and Miss Elizabeth
Guests and passersby are curious about how the inn got its name. As the Tillmans learned more and more about the property’s history it came to light that four of the past owners were all named George, with the exception of Elizabeth (Wilt) Baumgardner. The apostrophe isn’t missing! In honor of the legacy of all the past owners the inn has been named for all of the Georges. The five guest rooms evoke the past and are named for one of the previous owners — Motter, Wilt, Elizabeth and Baumgardner — and the home’s early history as a Presbyterian parsonage. Learn more about each of the inn’s Georges and Miss Elizabeth.
DR. GEORGE MOTTER
George Troxell Motter (1842-1903) was born in Emmitsburg April 5, 1842. He studied medicine in Emmitsburg, at the University of Maryland, and in Nashville, TN. During the Civil War Motter served as an assistant surgeon for the US Army. He lived in Taneytown until his death January 16, 1903. He was mayor of Taneytown at the time of his death. Motter also served on the boards of the Lutheran Seminary in Gettysburg, PA, Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, Taneytown, and was a founder of the Birnie Trust Co.
The daughter of Thomas Rudisell, owner of the tannery in Taneytown, Georges’s wife Mary Louise Rudisell was born in 1842 and died in 1936.
Married on June 3, 1869, Dr. George T. and Mary L. Motter had two daughters, Anna and Virginia. The couple settled in Taneytown. After Thomas Rudisell purchased the parsonage property from the Baltimore Presbytery in 1871, he deeded it to George and Mary. It is believed that the Motters built the Georgian-style home that still stands today onto the pre-existing stone structure. The home was clearly built in stages, with the original stone structure and two-story kitchen/room still in use. The map above shows the location of the property and owner “GT Motter.”
MR. GEORGE WALTER WILT
Upon Dr. Motter's death in 1903, ownership seems to have transferred to his daughter Anna and her husband, F.E. Cunningham. Some documents report that the house was “owned” by George's young grandson, George Motter Cunningham, and sold to George Walter Wilt (1875-1933), a local businessman. Wilt was a cashier for the Birnie Trust Co. The above photo shows Wilt inside the Birnie Trust Co. office on Baltimore Street, Taneytown.
Wilt married Mary Blanche Leister (1888-1955) in the early 1900s. After her husband's death in 1933 Mrs. Wilt took in boarders; mostly local workmen from surrounding factories. 10 York Street remained in the Wilt-Baumgardner family for more than 100 years.
MRS. ELIZABETH (Wilt) BAUMGARDNER
George and Mary's daughter Elizabeth (1912-99) lived most of her life in the house in the room that the Tillmans have named for her. She was married to James (Jimmy) Baumgardner (1911-80) who operated the restaurant next door in the Central Hotel. Pictured above are Taneytown High School Glee Club members Elizabeth and Jimmy in 1927. A driving force in Taneytown, Elizabeth was known for her beautiful gardens, thriftiness, and dedication to preserving her hometown’s rich history.
DR. GEORGE BAUMGARDNER
Elizabeth and Jimmy’s only child, Dr. George R. Baumgardner (b. 1932), inherited the property and kept the house in the family until 2017. A graduate of the University of Maryland Medical School (1958), Baumgardner grew up in the house on York Street but was not bound to stay in Taneytown. Following his mother’s death, he and his family would return to town for reunions and to maintain the house.