With Amish found in over 500 locations across North America, you have a decent chance of stumbling across a community while on the road (assuming you stay off the interstate).
Don Burke had this happen on a recent road trip when he came upon an unexpected settlement in northeastern Ohio.
He shares his passing visit to the Andover settlement, along with some photos in today’s guest post.
I enjoy visiting various Amish settlements whenever I can. When I am going to be on the road I look to see if I will be passing near a new-to-me community – always hoping to see some place or some thing that I’ve not seen before.
A few months ago my wife and I shared here on Amish America about an autumn car trip that we took to New England. That article highlighted a last minute schedule change which allowed us to spend a little time in the brown-top buggy region of New Wilmington, PA.
But not all of our Amish encounters on that trip were quite so planned. After spending a couple of nights in Mt. Hope (Holmes Co., OH) we hit the road heading north and east, with the goal of getting to Niagara Falls before nightfall. Cruising along Highway 6 we came upon a very unexpected surprise.
As usual we had done our pre-trip research, and we knew there were a very few scattered Amish settlements along our route this day, so we weren’t so surprised around Andover, OH, to see an Amish wagon with the orange SMV triangle on it.
Nor was it a shock when we noticed occasional “Amish blue” doors…
…on some Amish homes in that area…
… or even when we noticed an outhouse beside one of the homes.
This two-district settlement sported a handful of typical signs for home-industry items available for those who had time and interest to stop and look.
We only noticed two Amish people (both ladies) as we passed through, and their dress did seem a little different than most Amish places I’ve been, but such variations from one community to another is common.
But the one thing that was the real surprise to me was the white-topped buggies used by this community, …
…along with blue lanterns mounted on either side of the buggies. I had never seen anything like this before.
I understand that this type of buggy is the hallmark of the rather conservative Nebraska Amish. Later on this same trip we also visited a much larger Nebraska Amish settlement as we went through the Big Valley area of Pennsylvania.
Sadly you can’t do all you want to do while traveling, and other demands on our time didn’t allow us to do more than snap a few pictures while passing through. But even if it was a brief view, this little surprise along the roadside certainly brightened my day.
Erik: I happened to visit this community as well, about ten years ago, though my journey there was intentional. Here’s my post on that visit.
At the time, this was the only Nebraska Amish settlement outside of Pennsylvania, though another Nebraska settlement was later founded in New York.
Have you ever been to a Nebraska Amish settlement? You can read more on this group here.
A special thanks to Don, and you can find more of his photos at his Facebook page.