CREAM the butter and brown sugar together in a mixing bowl until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Sift the cinnamon, salt, baking soda, and flour together in a second mixing bowl. Slowly stir the flour mixure into the egg mixture until evenly blended. Divide the dough evenly into three portions and place each on a square of waxed paper. Wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, make the filling by combining the dates, pecans, water and white sugar in a saucepan set over low heat. Cook and stir until the filling has a paste-like consistency. Cool slightly. Working with one portion at a time, roll out the dough on a light floured surface to make a rectangle about 1/4 inch thick. I rolled dough between 2 pieces of waxed paper and it worked well. Spread 1/3 of the filling evenly over the dough; roll up to make a log. Repeat the process with the remaining dough. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
PREHEAT oven to 350 degrees Farenheit. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets. Using a sharp, serrated knife, cut the rolls into 1/4 inch slices. Place the slices on prepared baking sheets.
BAKE for 15 minutes or until set and lightly browned. Allow to cool on racks.
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