Hunting: Not just for Amish Men

As we’ve noted before, some Amish are avid hunters. Hunting is not just for the guys, however.  In a column titled “Shotgun Season opens on deer”, Lovina Eicher, aka The Amish Cook, describes her girl’s (or is it girls’?) involvement in hunting:

Our daughter, Elizabeth, doesn’t have to work today. Her factory is closed so workers can take advantage of the opening day of the shotgun season on deer. Elizabeth will go hunting with Timothy, and our other daughter, Susan, will accompany her friend, Mose. Joe will hunt tomorrow. He and the boys were practicing last night with the target.

Amish Boys HuntingI first became aware that some Amish females hunt too, when the teenage daughter of a friend eagerly described a morning out hunting with her brothers.  She has 8 of them, which may partially explain her interest.

While hunting is generally accepted by Amish, you may hear voices against it. Objections concern money spent on the sport, the idea that it is an idle pleasure, or questions over a non-resistant people using guns.  As a rule, Amish use the meat of the game they shoot.

Lovina’s Recipes

If hunting is not your thing, you may want to check the column anyway, for Lovina’s gooseberry pie recipe.  Thanks to an invite a couple of years ago via Lovina’s editor Kevin Williams, I have had the pleasure of tasting Lovina’s desserts straight from the source, at the Eicher home in Michigan.  But I don’t have to tell you this is good stuff.  Lovina recently shared a batch of favorite Thanksgiving recipes as well.

Amish hunting photo: Andrew J. Cerniglia/flickr

Get the Amish in your inbox

Join 15,000 email subscribers. No spam. 100% free

    Similar Posts

    Leave a Reply to Slightly-Handled-Order-Man Cancel reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


    1. Randy Adams

      Girl's or girls'

      It’s probably girls’.
      The apostrophe follows the s for the possessive of plural nouns that end in s, e.g. girls’ movies. For the possessive of a plural noun that does not end in s, add ‘s, e.g. women’s rights.

      Interesting article. Never thought of Amish women hunting.

      1. Randy actually the question was not about the apostrophe placement…but about how many of Lovina’s girls are actually involved in hunting 🙂

        I wasn’t sure if it is just the one or the second (Susan) as well. It’s not totally clear from the text, sounds like it could be both.

    2. Deer Hunting is OK in OH

      An Amish man we know has hunted on our land during “musket-loader” season. He has a large family and they eat the venison. Although I am supposed to feel ambivalent about hunting (“They’re shooting Bambi!”), I don’t. There are WAY too many deer. They are browsing the understory to nubbins and they’re still not getting enough to eat. Either we bring back natural predators like wolves or we allow hunting.

      1. Vannetta Chapman

        Bowhunting and predators

        Two different subjects. 🙂

        We were researching an Amish book in Middlebury, IN and stopped into a furniture store. The clerk at the front (a 20ish young Amish man) and my husband proceeded to have a lengthy discussion on the differences in hunting regulations between Indiana and Texas. I was also interested to learn that many Amish bow-hunt.

        Forsythia, I completely agree with you. Here in Texas, we often say that the only predator left for a deer is an automobile, though hubby argues that coyotes will sometimes take down a deer. Either way, we have way too many here as well. I have at least 20 in my yard everyday–and they are adorable. But, it’s not a natural thing and they rarely have enough to eat or enough water in our area.

    3. Paul's Daughters

      Hi Erik — My friend, Paul (whom you met in Michigan), has three daughters who hunt, and two of them got eight-point bucks on opening day this year. Paul did, too. We happened to be at the house when they arrived with their prizes, and enjoyed hearing their hunting adventures. They will add the meat to their winter stores, which helps a lot with their family of eleven.

      1. Keith, nice to hear news about Paul, I much enjoyed that visit. I did not meet his daughters but sounds like they take after their father in at least one area 🙂

    4. Slightly-Handled-Order-Man

      I think that, despite the assertions and reassertions of the 10 Commandments in the Bible forbidding killing/murder, the Amish feel that hunting is acceptable because it is rooted as being positive in the bible, if you want to interpret it that way, in that humans are supposed to be the pinnacle species, we might say, and have dominance over the other creatures (why too, people assert the whole stewardship issue, possibly, in religion). Also, traditionally Amish and English farmers would hunt to supplement food supplies, as noted, and also for decoration.

      On a silly note, those three pictured Amish men look rather ominous, and probably the closest anyone could come to jokingly saying “oh look, there goes the Amish Mafia hit-men off to enforce the Ordnung, wait, why are they packing heat?”

      1. They are a lot less ominous when you see the smiles in the larger version of the photo:

    5. Alice Mary

      I don’t think I’d ever be much of a huntress (city girl, gun shy, cried at Bambi , etc.), though good points are brought up here (too many deer attract other unwanted predators). We’ve had coyotes in our suburban area for several years (in addition to the “native” Fox—this IS the “Fox Valley”, after all). Many people have lost small pets to them, unfortunately, and a recent news report mentioned a small boy being bitten in the face by one (many people find this dubious, thinking it was a large dog). However, just yesterday there was a news story (with a sad photo) about a cougar being shot and killed in another Chicago suburb (cougars are much, MUCH less common around here). Over the past 25 years, the deer population has generally been declining due to residential development. However, since the economy tanked, there are fewer developments happening, so I’m wondering if deer aren’t increasing again? Personally, I don’t like hunting for “sport” if the animal isn’t eaten/made frugal use of.

      Alice Mary

    6. Slightly-Handled-Order-Man

      Girls can be good shots (better than me)

      I remember being a lousy shot when I was 14 or 15 and a RCSC, I am still very afraid I shot the massive beams holding up the first floor of one of the buildings at Kingston ON’s venerable Royal Canadian Military College at the HMCS Ontario Summer Camp, not that I fared much better in the outdoor shooting range at the camp I attended in British Columbia.

      But we were given WWII vintage surplus to use.

      I’m not joking.

      I’m not joking about my cousin, a girl, being a good shot, and a good tall tale teller through her grandfather’s bear hunting activities, she is actually probably very good in her own right, I mean you don’t grow up in Country Manitoba and not pick up a thing or two, I think.

    7. I shot my first and only deer sometime between the age of 10 & 12.. I remember it like it was yesterday.. Aimed, fired & hit dead on.. it was a good ways off. My dad & I climbed down from the blind and went after it.. Dad lifted its neck up to see where I hit it (in the breast) and I remember him pointing saying it was a great hit but it could have been over just an inch or so.. (shesh!) Anyways.. I dont remember one thing after that other than those big black/brown eyes … I dont remember going back to camp, or his buddies congratulating me either.. I’ve blocked it all out other than what I shared above

      Saying that.. Im all for girls & women hunting if that is something they like to do. I hunted, fished & trapped with my dad from the time I was a little bitty squirt of 3 or 4 until I was about 13 or 14. I had great times and great memories.. We always ate what we killed. We would never think of killing any animal just for fun, though we enjoyed every minute of it.

      We are overrun by deer here too in NE Ohio in the Cleveland suburbs.. I hit a deer not quite a year ago on my way to work one early morning.. It was a kamakazi deer.. I have no clue where it came from, it was just in front of my car on the highway, with me going about 40mph since I’d just turned onto it.. Lucky me. I was able to limp my SUV home thankfully since I was less than a mile from home…And no I didnt take it for the meat though I could have.. I dont want any city deer that eats Monsanto lawns..

      We definitely need to keep the herds thinned up here.. They run up & down our streets and thats dangerous.. I was in my front yard & a buck & 2 doe came walking down the street and the buck was acting like he was going to charge me.. I skedaddled into the house.. got my camera and went back out.. dang the bad luck, I didnt have a card in the camera so the awesome pictures I got are only imprinted in my mind. 😉