Amish Autumn Scenes, Pumpkins, Halloween and More (29 Photos)
With the air crisp and the calendar about to leave October behind, I thought it would be a nice time to look back at fall-related posts we’ve featured here over the years.
Photos by Bill Coleman and others, the Amish and Halloween, and others follow. I hope you’re enjoying this autumn season, it has been absolutely beautiful in my neck of the woods lately.
Bill Coleman, who passed away in 2014, was perhaps the best-known photographer of the Amish. We’ve featured Bill’s photos here on several occasions, as well as reprinting an interview with Bill along with commentary from his son Noah.
Here are a few of Bill’s autumn-themed photos. Bill famously shot many of his photos in Pennsylvania’s Big Valley. Many look like perfectly-arranged paintings, attesting to Bill’s great skill:
Autumn scenes from different Amish communities. Here is Snyder County, PA, via reader Jerry, home to both Amish and Mennonites:
Ed shared some pumpkin photos from Lancaster County:
And also some Lancaster harvest shots. Lancaster Amish are among the relatively few who raise tobacco:
Here are some shots of my own from the produce auction at Munfordville, KY:
Here we have Ethridge, TN in fall, courtesy of Adair Faust:
Finally, last month contributor Don Burke took us to the North Missouri Pumpkin and Mum auction:
What do Amish think about Halloween? Traditionally, they do not observe the holiday, though pumpkins and other autumn decor may be seen at some homes.
However, there has been word that some Amish children in at least one community have participated in trick-or-treating. Here’s what one reader wrote us about Amish in northeastern Ohio:
Well Erik … you should visit Mesopotamia , Ohio during trick or treat , you’ll find Amish kids trick or treating along side the “yankee” kids . It’s great ! The ones I have spoken to about Halloween know that it is “All Hallows Eve ” the night before All Saints day ,a Christian holiday .
That would be far from common though.
As Donald Kraybill writes in Concise Encyclopedia of Amish, Brethren, Hutterites, and Mennonites, “TRADITIONAL GROUPS [ie, Amish], in keeping with their separatist stance, are more likely to ignore holidays such as Halloween in the United States or its equivalent in other countries, and holidays that emphasize nationalistic military themes” (Concise Encyclopedia, p 107).
Visiting an Amish community in Autumn. If you’re thinking of an autumn visit to an Amish settlement, here are links to resources from the three largest Amish settlements, all of which are tourist-friendly:
Visiting Lancaster County in Autumn
Visiting Holmes County in Autumn
Visiting Northern Indiana in Autumn
Happy autumn and enjoy the wonderful views and pleasant weather for as long as it lasts 🙂 .
What an Interesting Halloween fact! And nice pictures.
I personally am a celebrator of Halloween (and rarely see a good reason not to celebrate), but as I am also a Christian, I seem to be quite a rarity. Naturally, I wouldn’t have expected the Amish to celebrate so it’s rather amusing to me that some do, even if it’s just a very small group of them. I believe that it’s not about the date of the year, but what each individual chooses to do. I see no harm in simply going door to door for candy if that’s your kind of thing (it used to be what I liked to do).
We don’t all celebrate death and do witchcraft 🙂
Of course, no offense to anyone who celebrates different. I’m just pointing out that the holiday doesn’t have to be observed in one specific way. It’s whatever you choose to do. I also have no problem with anyone who simplu ignores Halloween or shows disinterest. I’ve just dealt with too many people who also try to make others do the same.
Thanks for the article. I love seeing the pictures, too.
I know some folks feel strongly about Halloween, and others see it as mostly harmless. We had a good discussion on this topic some years back, actually a couple of them.
Glad you enjoyed the photos. It was nice digging through some of the older autumn-posts to find these. Might just be the best season.
What An Interesting Halloween Fact Response
I Appreciate your belief to which you are entitled to , but Halloween is related to Satan and things involving evilness and you can see it everywhere and in almost everything from movies, to Halloween costumes and etc . God tells us these things are wrong in His word and that we are to not have any part in them . We Christian’s should know this . We need to study about the things that come into our homes that can release demonic influences in our lives . I’m sorry but I don’t mean any disrespect to you about this , this is how I feel about it , even though I let my 6 children do Halloween when they were youngsters , but have done a lot of study since on the subject . My husband and I admire the Amish very much , and understand why they live as they do, so much to the point that I’ve learned a lot of good advice from them. If I have misunderstood you please let me know . God Bless You . Mary Collins
Love the photos
While I love the photos taken by this amazing photographer ~ I don’t as I know the Amish don’t appreciate their pictures being taken much less distributed. I have good friends that are Amish and give me free reign taking photos but if I accidentally catch a face I either crop out or delete.
Thanks for the heads up.
I frequently drive from Northern to Central Wisconsin through counties populated by Amish. On one particular county road, especially on Sundays, the Amish youth have taken to bicycling in groups of as many as 5 – 8 bikes or as few as 1 or 2. On beautiful autumn afternoone, the scene is charming. I have a dashcam in my vehicle, and it records the cyclists (as it does everything else in my view.) I have hought of posting some of the videos, but never gave a thought to the cyclists not wanting their photos made public. If I post any with faces, I will crop or otherwise obscure them.
Do you celebrate Halloween?
The Short Answer:
I was born on the 70’s in a little town in Maine. We lived in a community of Christians. One of them, one of my Mom’s best friends, even drove a horse and buggy. We went to church every Sunday and my parents often read from the Bible each night or had friends over and we would sing or have our own Bible study. We went to a Christian school. We weren’t Amish, but we did a lot of the same things. We even had an outhouse and a wrought iron wood stove that we would use to heat the house, cook with and also to heat water for our baths. Each Halloween, my parents (mostly my Mother) would dress my brother and I in innocent, home made costumes. We were never any sort of ghoul or witch. We were always something like, a cowboy and a princess. We went to Halloween functions that our town orchestrated every year. It seemed completely innocent. It was fun. We went bobbing for apples, went on hay rides and played other games appropriate to our age.
The older I got, Halloween was more commercialized, just like Christmas and Easter. But, because I was already in the mindset that Halloween was innocent and fun, I didn’t really notice that it got darker and more evil until about 10 years ago. We had moved all over the US and I saw and participated in Halloween even as an adult.
When I was in high school I would hear about how every year some of the other kids would TP the principals house or leave paper bags of dog poo and set them on fire on peoples door steps. I guess as a trick.
Back then, when we got our candy spoils, my favorites were the peanut butter cups, kit kats and bazooka bubble gum. Least favorite was the bit-o-honey or sugar daddy’s.
Today, we don’t eat much junk. We make most of our treats using better quality ingredients. We eat healthy. My daughter loves kale.
About 7 years ago, I moved back east to where my Mom and brother and other step siblings lived, near the Amish in Indiana and I started to have a different view of Halloween. What once was my favorite holiday and the only holiday that I really enjoyed, had suddenly become my least favorite holiday. I was already Christian, but I had strayed away and then I became born again. Now, I have a 3 year old at the age of 47. She is my only child. I am having to explain to all of my relatives and friends about why my husband and I are not allowing our daughter to celebrate Halloween when everyone else does now as we did when we were younger. It’s awkward when we receive cute costumes that our friends and/or relatives might gift us and we have to remind them that we won’t be going out and she won’t be wearing it unless it can be used as a dress up at home situation. Like a princess in a castle in the 18th century or something.
We both feel that it is a holiday that God would not want us to participate in. It uses up resources. It is wasteful. It is harmful to our way of life. It is unnecessary. Looking back on it now, it would probably have been better if my parents would have put their feet down and said NO, you’re not participating in Halloween. Sure, we would have been the outcasts in school, but, maybe I wouldn’t’ve strayed from God in the first place.
We may seem like strict parents to many, but, we do not let our child watch anything that has magic in it, or Halloween, or even Christmas, because they are all about magic now. Even Easter is about magic now as far as mainstream society goes and has nothing to do with the real meaning. We do our best to gently remind our toddler that the “M” word is bad and not how God wants us to live. Halloween is all about the “M” word and we don’t watch or participate in anything having to do with the “M” word. So… pretty much all holidays are out, except for the birthday and we only really celebrate my child’s birthday. We do not give each other gifts on our birthdays. We do not expect gifts from others and tell others not to get us anything for our birthdays or Christmas because we don’t celebrate them. A simple Happy Birthday will do and maybe a nice home made meal.
wow i hope one day i travel there