Maybe more than any other Amish place name, I’ve never had a clue how to pronounce “Chouteau” (Chah-toe? Shoh-two? Choo-tee-ow? 🙂 ). Lucky for me, this is a blog, not a podcast.
Why am I pondering pronunciation quirks again? Well, our busy contributor Tom Geist checks in today with a visit to the Chouteau, Oklahoma Amish settlement. Tom, I should say, gets around pretty well.
Besides recent looks at Amish settlements in South Dakota and Nebraska, in the coming weeks you can expect to see more on Tom’s visits to Amish settlements in Kansas, West Virginia, Kentucky, and other parts of Oklahoma. No doubt Tom drives a sturdy vehicle.
The Chouteau settlement, lying in Mayes and Rogers Counties, is the oldest and largest of Oklahoma’s Amish communities. Founded in 1910, the settlement sits at 4 church districts in size today.
I’ll let Tom take it from here with the rest of the commentary, which supplements his trademark dash-cam photos.
Amish at Chouteau, OK
Chouteau has a large Amish presence. The town’s population is around 2,114 and there are around 100 Amish families. There are quite a few Amish businesses around, but very few buggies.
Chouteau morning countryside. Though not all roads leading to the Amish are paved like in the big Amish communities, here in Chouteau you don’t have to go far off of the beaten path much to get to the Amish.
I spy…I spy an Amish school!
First Amish farm.
All of the Amish places I saw in this area used tractors heavily. I was told that about the only time they use their buggies is on Sunday.
Second Amish farm. Again, unless you spot little things that tell you it might be an Amish place (buggy, buggy tracks, martin bird houses, phone shanty, a lack of American flag, power lines, TV/dish antenna, et cetera) you would think English lived there.
Creekside Sales LLC (address: 5387 W 620 Chouteau, OK).
Local Amish sometimes refer to this place as the “Amish Wal-mart” because of the variety of items that are sold inside.
Green Country Candy (8972 W 620 Inola, OK). The address says “Inola” but it is still part of the Chouteau Amish.
Floyd and Ruth Knepp took over the store from Floyd’s dad. The big candy item they had made the day I was there was “cashew crunch.”
I am not sure why they were somewhat surprised that I had heard of it or had any before, as a number of places I have been to before make it as well. But, what I have not had before was popcorn they make with crunch or something good on it. I just bought a single small bag of it and regretted it later. Two words to describe it…Yum-Me! (Yes, I know “yummy” is one word) 🙂
It looks a little like an optical illusion, but the Candy Store is not leaning, I probably was.
The Amish Cheese House and Nettie Ann’s Bakery. I didn’t get the address for it but it is in the city on a main road. Good food! Not 100% Amish but check it out anyway.
Third Amish farm. Most farms have more than one house on them for multiple family living.
Thank you Tom for this virtual visit to Chouteau. Anyone else ever been there?