Comment on Texas Amish by Erik/Amish America.
It’s up to interpretation, but David Luthy defines a settlement as 3 families, or 2 if one of them is a member of the ministry. I think that is a pretty fair definition. Two’s company, three’s a crowd.
And it can be 2 instead of 3 with a minister, b/c attracting ministry to settle is a vital part of getting a community to take root (no minister means it’s a lot harder to hold church, though ministry from larger settlements will often visit fledgling settlements to tend to spiritual needs like church and baptism).
Thanks to a friend at the Young Center I was able to double-check on Stephenville. According to Luthy (whose work is top-notch) the Stephenville settlement (or Stephenville/Dublin as he describes it) existed from 1982 to 1993.
It’s possible that there is a bazaar of some sorts (and if they’ve maintained connections, maybe individual Amish, or youth, still go down to work there from time to time?) but I don’t think there is any strong evidence of a bona fide settlement here that would go against Luthy’s info.
I’ve also seen mention of Amish at Stephenville here and there, and even the 20 families number in places, but I believe that info may be adopted from the NYT article I mention above, which also mentions 20 families, but was written in 1987. So I’m going to go with Luthy and the other sources on this one who don’t include any info for Stephenville.
Alas, it looks like Texas is holding on with just one Amish settlement in Bee County, but we wish them much growth in future
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