Amish in South Dakota

South Dakota became the latest addition to the Amish map in 2010 when families from Wisconsin began moving to Hutchinson County in the southeast part of the state.  The group got a good bit of media attention along with other new Amish communities in Western states such as Colorado.

South Dakota is better known as the state with the highest number of Hutterite colonies (though overall more Hutterites live in Canada).

For more info on the Amish in South Dakota, try this new Amish State Guide entry:  South Dakota Amish.

And if you aren’t familiar with the Hutterites, they are an Anabaptist group related to the Amish.

They differ in some key ways, including their use of technology and by the fact that they live in colonies and share resources in common.

For a good intro to the Hutterites, in January we featured an interview with former Hutterite Mary-Ann Kirkby, along with some basic info on the group.  An excerpt from the interview:

What aspects of Hutterite life have you missed the most?  Has that changed over time?

Mary-Ann Kirkby: Most of all the people, their saucy sense of humour, their endearing and unmistakable candor and the wonderful camaraderie.  I miss eating my favorites foods, including cottage cheese and sucre pies on a regular basis and for my son Levi, I miss the privilege of having friends and family right next door and running with them all day in such a safe community environment.

What don’t you miss about Hutterite life?

Mary-Ann Kirkby: Getting up really early and my cook week.  I would however really enjoy my bake week. The warmth and smells of the bakery, watching the dough rise, kneading it and rolling the buns is an altogether sensuous experience.

If you didn’t catch it already, it’s definitely worth a read, which you can do here: Hutterites.

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  1. Richard

    There are just some groups that i just dont know very much about like the Hutterites. Erik are there any settlements in the state of Pennsylvania that you know of?. Richard from Lebanon county’s Amish settlement.

  2. Magdalena

    I would love to see more Amish move into this area of northern New Brunswick (Canada). There is lots of farm land and it is relatively inexpensive, but the growing season is short, the winters harsh, and there is little peripheral industry. But it is beautiful, and the soil is generally good and the people very friendly and open. And lots of water! No droughts! It is possible to heat at a low cost with wood, too, in this part of Canada. So pass the word along if you know of a community that is looking!

  3. Alice Aber

    Good morning!!!

    I think it is amazing Amish are just settling in SD in 2010, but then again it amazes me as to just how much they move in the first place. I guess I am easily amazed, LOL.

    Have a good day!

  4. Bruderhof

    Richard there are no Hutterites in PA but there are some Bruderhof, which is a group with similarities to the Hutterites like communal property and living. For a time they were associated with Hutterites but that relationship dissolved back in the 90s I believe.

    Magdalena you should become a Budget scribe and write in to promote New Brunswick for any Amish with itchy feet out there. If you look at the history it’s pretty interesting to see how Amish have used the Budget to try to promote interest in a new settlement/area in hopes of attracting others.

    Alice I bet the number of states with Amish is just going to keep increasing. I am looking forward to the new statistics from the Young Center which I imagine will be out sometime this summer.

  5. Katie Troyer

    There used to be a Plain Community at Woodstock New Brunswick which I was a part of. But it lasted only a couple of years, like 4-6 years. One disavantage of the Amish moving in from the states is the hassle of border crossing and all the paperwork including passports and the use of photos.

    1. Robert

      community in Woodstock, New Brunswick

      Just so you know. There is a plain community back near Woodstock, New Brunswick. It is in Richmond Corner. Do you know Peter Gerber?

      1. Katie Troyer

        Yes, I know Peter & Mary Ellen Gerber, or at least I knew them 15 years ago. Are there more plain people with them?

  6. Magdalena

    Yes, I knew of that one that disbanded. I didn’t know you had been there! My grandfather was from Woodstock. I live just upriver, near Grand Falls. I still don’t have status in Canada and I have been here since 2002. I am married to a Canadian. There is a Mennonite colony near Centreville which has been there for quite a few years now.

  7. June Hofer

    Mennonite Colony

    Magdalena , What is a Mennonite Colony????? Thanks Loads!! JUne Hofer

  8. Magdalena

    I mean a group of Mennonites who decided to settle there.

  9. Lindsay

    I’m surprised there hasn’t been more Amish settlement in Nebraska and the Dakotas…land is cheap and the soil is good. Plus I would think it would be easier to live in peace without invasive toursists poking around.

    I’m back in Nebraska visiting and I just went down to visit the Pawnee County settlement. It seems to be thriving and growing…and as an added bonus the English community seems to be exciting and welcoming of the Amish in their neighborhood.

  10. Donna Godshall Hayden

    PA Hutterite Communities

    On Mill Road in Franconia, PA there is an old Hutterite Meeting House. Once a year they had German services. My grandmother used to take me. That was about 1960.
    Donna Hayden

    1. Dan

      PA Hutterites in Franconia, PA

      I am afraid that Donna Godshall Hayden is confused with her comment concerning an “Old Hutterite Meetinghouse ” in PA. First and foremost, the Hutterites always live communally, so there would be no meetinghouses that are not on a colony. All colonies would have German services and not just once a year but nearly daily. Also, the Hutterites first arrived in South Dakota. They have stayed in the Great Plains. They are not nor were they ever from PA. A very small group explored living in western PA on the land owned by the Rappites in the late 1800’s but they only stayed a matter of months and got out of there and returned to SD as they did not care for the hills and trees in PA. Donna must be confusing the Hutterites with a different group.