I just came across an Amish business listing for the nation’s fifth-largest community, with over 75 businesses. I wouldn’t say Adams County, Indiana is an Amish destination that draws a ton of visitors. I think it is overshadowed by the three or four larger communities, as well as some smaller ones. I also don’t think it’s the most tourist-friendly place. That might have to do with the community itself perhaps not being as disposed to outsiders, as, say, Amish in Elkhart-LaGrange County or Daviess County in the same state.
The one Amish-branded tourist business I remember from my first visit to the community 10 years ago was “Amishville”, and what I saw wasn’t inspiring, at least looking at it from the tourist perspective. But the fact that it is not the most tourist-geared settlement may actually be part of its appeal. With over 10,000 Amish residents, a specific Swiss Amish culture, and dozens of Amish businesses it’s definitely an interesting place to visit. At least two businesses on this list I’ve visited before – Country Lane Bakery and R & E Sales.
Looking at these lists, you can pick some things up by just the names and descriptions. For example, Schwartz is a common name in this community, and that is confirmed by the presence of a full dozen businesses using the surname:
- Schwartz Bakery
- Schwartz Blacksmith
- Schwartz Cabinet & Repair Shop
- Schwartz Cider Press
- Schwartz Country Store
- Schwartz Engine Repair
- Schwartz Home Sales
- Schwartz Mfg.
- Schwartz Shoe Store
- Schwartz Variety Store
- Schwartz Weaving
- Schwartz Woodworking
You can also get a sense of what business types are popular in a community. For example, in some “lower tech” communities like Ethridge, Tennessee, you tend to see simpler products dominate – soaps, baskets, simple foods, for instance.
Other businesses on the list that caught my eye include:
- Bluecreek Glassware – Dinner sets, water sets, canister sets, toys, chimes, baby items, LED lights, homemade greetings
- Girod Watch & Clock Repair – Reconditioned pocket watches, clock sales, new and used antiques
- Joe’s Lighting Products – Hitzer heating products, wicks for any heater and large assortment of housewares
- L & M Small Engine Repair – Also Paslode Air Guns, repair and service
- South Slope Fine Rustic Hickory Furniture – Stunning collection of oak, cherry, walnut or hickory handcrafted furniture from the great outdoors
- Willow Creek Store – Fresh produce from local growers, meat, cheese, bulk foods, spices, frech peaches and blueberries in July and all your canning supplies
The listing has the addresses for each business and descriptions for most. Check it out here.
Images: field work; Schwartz Shoe Store – S.I.
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