Thursday, February 21, 2008

13 Things About Ohio's Amish Country

Brian and I have been, at the Pastors & Wives retreat this week in Sugarcreek, OH. It's been a great time and God has given me much to take home with me and ponder.

Tomorrow is our last day here. So in honor of this mini-vacation in Ohio's Amish Country, I will share this Thursday 13.

  1. Holmes County, Ohio, has the world's largest population of Amish, not Lancaster, PA.

  2. Amish and many Mennonites speak a unique blend of high German, called Pennsylvannia Dutch. They read the Bible and worship in traditional high German. So the Amish are fluent in three languages.

  3. World Crafts, located in Kidron, is part of the Mennonite project: 10,000 Villages. This is my favorite store in all of Ohio's Amish Country. They sell ethnic arts and crafts from around the world. The profits return to the local artist. I love, love, love the nativity sets!

  4. Lehman's Hardware, also in Kidron, is world famous for their non-electric appliances. They've even furnished Hollywood with period appropriate pieces.

  5. I have found nowhere else in my limited travels, where you are regularly served mashed potatoes, homemade stuffing, homemade noodles, homemade rolls, and gravy IN THE SAME MEAL. Carb heaven.

  6. There are many cheese factories in Ohio's Amish Country. Amish dairy farmers refuse some of the technology required for "approved" drinking milk. So they make cheese, wonderful cheese I might add.

  7. At Heini's Cheese try free samples of green moon cheese, chocolate cheeses, peanut butter cheese, and more. My favorite: lacy baby swiss.

  8. Attention seamstresses! You must, must, must go to Zinck's fabric warehouse. Sorry, no website, but you can find them in Berlin. They sell fabric at outrageous prices. I bought two bolts of denim there, the stuff that Amish men's pants are made out of. Virtually indestructable. I've made slipcovers, blue jeans, shopping bags, purses, and more out of that stuff. Ten years later I have just now used it all up.

  9. Ohio's Amish Country is "touristy" but it only takes a turn or two to get onto a township road and enter another world. Just today within five minutes we saw two one room Amish school houses, kids at recess throwing snowballs, fields of shocked corn, multiple buggies, and lines of laundry hanging on porches.

  10. Ohio's Amish drive around in square topped buggies. We used to live near Berne, IN, where the bishops would not allow their people to use covered buggies. Those poor people would drive around in open buggies using black umbrellas to block the wind.

  11. This region is not only home to Amish, but also multiple groups of Mennonites, Dunkards, Hutterites, and Brethren. You will find endless variati on the prayer cap and cape dress.

  12. What I admire about the Amish: Their work ethic and their purposeful removal of distractions. I think this has given them a strong family bond that we struggle to achieve today.

  13. What burdens me for the Amish: We have romanticized these people. We forget or don't take time to learn that their religion keeps many of them in fear. There is no freedom to be different, to question, or to leave. Those who do pay a huge price emotionally. There is much we can learn from these hard-working people, but not all the lessons are positive.

I hope you've enjoyed my little tour through Ohio's Amish Country. It's a great place to visit!!


Lady Rose said...

haven't been there in ages - but I love it (very relaxing place to take a vacation)

happy tt13 mine is up

. . . Dallas Meow . . . . >^^< . . . said...

I love old golden books too!
Tawny scrawny lion!
Happy Thursday Thirteen - love your site, hope you don't mind if I link you.

mom huebert said...

Thank you; that was interesting.

My husband is Mennonite, but our community is very "progressive" and therefore indistinguishable from the rest of American society, except for the work ethic! Also, this branch of Mennonites speaks Low German, although that is dying out as the older generation dies.

Lynne said...

We enjoyed a lovely dinner with an Amish family in Indiana a few years ago. It was wonderful to have the opportunity to learn so much about their beliefs and family life.

Nicholas said...

Very interesting. I always assumes that there more Amish in Lancaster, PA until I read this.

You lat 2 comments are connected, it seems. Their work ethic and removal of distractions (which must make life so terribly boring for them) is in part due to the pressure not to be different. Yes, it controls them by fear of consequences: though you can say that about any religion.

A Dusty Frame said...

I love Amish country. The best get away my husband and I had was to a bed and breakfast in Amish country.

Our 1st vacation after we were married, we went to Lancaster county.

I do wish that their lives were as carefree and beautiful as the appear to us. I know they are not though.