Wagner's Camp, located in southern Somerset County was originally a farm owned by Christian Wilhelm. It was purchased in 1882 by William Wagner. Appreciating the stand of many maple sugars on his land, William started the sugar camp. Many of those original sugar maples remain and some are over 200 years old. Being a cooper (craftsman) by trade, William made wooden spiles, keelers (wooden buckets), hauling casks, storage tanks, sugar troughs, sugar molds, sugar storage chests, shipping crates and barrels, mauls, paddles, and many other items used in the production of maple syrup. Some of the wooden equipment was branded with the WW (William Wagner) or "10" identifying his craftsmanship. His handmade kettle crane for lifting the iron kettles of syrup off the fire still remains in the original camp.
Joseph Wagner, William's son, purchased the farm from his father in 1919. Along with his wife, Jennie, "Joe" continued the family tradition of producing maple products. During this era, coal was mined on the farm to use for fuel for the production of the syrup. Some of the maple syrup was taken to the Tableland Fair, sponsored by Gimbels in Pittsburgh and attracted the attention of the Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce and the Pittsburgh Press. These and other groups began coming to the sugar camp to see how the syrup was made. Their interest helped start the growth of the Maple Industry in the area.
In 1949, the farm was purchased by Leona and Dorothy from their father and they continued the tradition of producing maple products. In the late 1950's, the old wooden building was replaced by a cement block structure. The picturesque old building with hand hewn timber was the subject of a painting by artist Tom Schenck and a reproduction of the painting decorates some of the maple syrup containers still used today. Original keelers were replaced with plastic tubing. In 1978 a new stainless steel oil-fired evaporator replaced the original coal system which had been custom built in Pittsburgh. Even with this modernization, some of the techniques of our forefathers, such as the finishing of syrup in the iron kettles and the making of sugar in wooden troughs which continued until 1981.
In 2018 the Walter's family purchased the camp and is continuing the process started by the Wagner family. The Walters’ family is a second generation maple producer located in the Appalachian Mountains of Western PA. We have 24,000 taps on multiple vacuum tubing systems. We tap a mixture of sugar and red maple trees. All of our wood lots are managed for future generations. We are licensed and inspected by the PA Department of Agriculture. Our syrup is produced in the USA, not imported from Canada.