Deb Abraham Spalding
In Lantz, Maryland, in the 1920s, three Bumbaugh daughters married three Buhrman brothers. One of those couples gave birth to Dollie Buhrman. One day, teen-aged Dollie spotted a boy working at Harrison’s Market in Cascade when she went there with her father to get ice cream. Dollie saw the boy and, “thought he was wonderful and cute!”
To meet her today, you’d never guess that Dollie took the first step to meet her future husband. At the time, Dollie was determined. She told her friend, Ruthie, that she caught a glimpse of this guy at Harrison’s, and he needed to come to see her. With Ruthie’s help to arrange it, Roy Sanders from Greenstone, Pennsylvania, went to meet Dollie at her house. The two became sweethearts.
In April 2023, that girl and that boy, Roy and Dollie (Buhrman) Sanders, stood proudly in their business, Sanders Market, in Cascade, greeting customers and exchanging jokes and pleasantries.
When the couple met in 1953, Harrison’s Market was a two-room store that was in a house across from the current Sanders Market on Military Road in Cascade. Roy and Dollie live in that house now.
Dollie graduated in 1954; Dollie married Roy (or did Roy marry Dollie?) in 1955; in 1956, Roy bought the Harrison’s Market’s stock and equipment with an option to buy the house in five years—Roy called the new business Sanders Market. In 1957, Roy was drafted into the U.S. Army.
Roy needed his new bride Dollie to run the market while he was away. But Dollie was working at Clare Frock in Thurmont at the time, and she told Roy she couldn’t run the store. Roy responded, “Honey, I don’t want you to run it. I just want you to keep it open until I get back.”
Dollie quit Clare Frock, and Roy’s younger brother, Bub, and Dwight Dingle helped her.
Roy returned after just two years of service in 1959. He added a room and refrigeration unit to the house/market and started cutting meat.
On April 30, 1964, the Sanders moved the market into a newly built facility across the road from their house.
Sanders Market has always been a family business. The Sanders’ three daughters, Rosalie, Kathleen, and Julie, all worked in the family business as youngsters. Kathleen Yarish pursued a career in healthcare. She helps her parents make their doctor’s appointments.
The oldest, Rosalie Sanders-Luke, has always worked at the store. Shortly after marrying Bryan Luke, he also joined the family business. If you’ve been to Sanders Market, you will notice that they have a notoriously fresh deli and meats section. There is usually a line of customers awaiting their turn to be served.
The youngest daughter, Julie, has always worked full-time at the store, aside from attending college at Frostburg and coaching part-time.
These days, Roy and Dollie fill in at the market from time to time, but they’re not seen at the market on a regular basis. Roy explained that he has had some health issues and hasn’t been very active for the past three years. “I miss the people,” he said.
About the potential of a Dollar General store being built nearby, Roy explained that when he started, “There were 15 mom-and-pop stores in the immediate area. Of course, Fort Ritchie was thriving, so it was different.” He added, “There’s just a piece of the pie, and, hopefully, it’s a big enough piece to keep the doors open. We survived Walmart and Dollar General coming in. We’ve been very fortunate here. The community has been good to us.”
Julie described the legacy, “The biggest thing about having a store like this is that your customers become family. When new people come in and you can help them, it speaks volumes when they come back and thank you.”
Coming full circle, currently, two employees at the market have a father who also worked at Sanders. They’re enjoying comparing the generational gap.
In 2023, Dollie and Roy Sanders will be married for 68 years, and the store will be in business for 67 years.
Cover caption: Roy and Dollie Sanders, proprietors of Sanders Market in Cascade, Maryland are shown in the store in April.
Photo by Deb Abraham Spalding
Inside caption: Dollie and Roy Sanders are shown with Roy’s brother Bub Sanders in the days at Sanders Market when it was located in a house.