Don Burke is back today to share his visit to the Graber family in Jamesport, Missouri, and his stay at their “Doddy House”. We’ve heard about the Graber family before in other posts from Don (links to follow).

Don explains what the Doddy House is below. First off it’s not an Amish grandparents’ house, which is what the term usually refers to in PA Dutch (and by the way you may have seen the more common spelling of “Dawdi” – Don says “Doddy” is how the Grabers spell it, so we’ve kept that here).

Wintry weather in the Jamesport Amish settlement

But if you’re heading to this area, this might be a nice “Amishesque” accommodation option to be aware of – not totally off the grid like an Amish place would be, but still right on an Amish property.

This would be another option for anyone who’d would like to stay as near as possible to the Amish (similar experiences include Lancaster County farm stays and Amish home meals in Holmes County) but maybe want to still have some modern comforts. As always, Don’s photos plant you right into the scene… 


Looking out the window as the sun rose above the hitchin’ post that Thursday morning, I was reminded of two things: My stays in Amish Jamesport (Missouri) are always too short, and there is something new to experience almost every visit.

This trip was a quick two-night stay to make a delivery and squeeze in a few quick personal visits while there, and time had come to pack my things and begin the trip back home. But my new experience on this trip was especially interesting – I got to stay in the new Doddy House!

Over the past few years you have been introduced to the Graber family in various articles posted here on Amish America. You’ve had a chance to visit Mary (the Mom) in both her older and newer homes. You’ve read about Marie (a daughter) and the Arbor House Country Inn she runs. And you even shared in three posts (part one, two, three) about Laura’s (another daughter) “Amish-ish” wedding. Mary has remained Amish through these years, while most of the next generation has migrated to other plain denominations.

Mary still lives on the family farm-place about 4 miles outside of Jamesport, and she still gives an Amish Home Tour in her home.

Mary Graber’s home

When Mary’s youngest son and his wife (John and Cindy) got married a few years back, they built a house on the farm as well. John has a shop there, and from here runs his construction business and other activities.

In the past year John and Cindy have added a new, dual-purpose building to the homestead. On one end the building is a two-vehicle garage. But by adding some additional square footage to the building, they also made a two-room suite to accommodate guests. Since Cindy’s (Amish) family lives out of state, these accommodations allow them some private personal space during visits – and this has earned it the name of “The Doddy House.”

Doddy House (with Don’s Jeep parked out front)

But during the many times throughout the year when the suite is not used by family, it is available for paying guests. Marie oversees the reservations and other arrangements along with her other rooms at Arbor House.

The suite has a spacious living area, complete with large kitchenette, a small dining table, and some comfy seating.

It also has a separate roomy bedroom and bath. The suite will accommodate up to four guests.

Sporting little more than a couple of houses, a shop, and a horse barn along with the Doddy House, the Graber farm is not a stereotypical Amish farm with a variety of livestock or acres of crops tended by an Amish farmer and his team of draft horses.

But for anyone who fancies getting away from the busy-ness of life and spending a few days in quietness of country living in the heart of Amish country – and possibly even taking in a tour of an Amish home (for a nominal charge) – the Doddy House on the Graber homestead just might be the place they are looking for.

  • For room information or reservation see Arbor House Country Inn on Facebook or online
  • For reservations or cost information on Amish Home Tours, call Mary Graber at 660-684-6082. Tours are by appointment only. Leave a message and she will get back in touch with you. Please call at least two or three days ahead to insure Mary is available and has a time slot available.
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