Reader Mike Sparks shares photos from a Sunday visit to Ashland County, Ohio.
Most of these are from the Swartzentruber settlement, though you’ll see several from the nearby Old Order community.
Note the unusual buggy triangle in the final photo. Ashland County has several distinct Amish settlements.
Sunday afternoon in Amish communities is a peaceful time. There is an increased amount of buggy and foot traffic, with families returning from church, youth heading to their groups, and people going visiting.
Nothing for sale on this day of course, and a special focus on God and family. It’s a time to rest, pray, visit, read, eat, and recharge your batteries.
Thanks to Mike for today’s visit to Ashland County (his comments accompany the photos below).
This was a one-room school, which was a bit nicer looking compared to most I saw during the day.
I passed this farm and liked the listing of fruits and vegetables listed on the homemade sign. Unfortunately, being a Sunday, I could not buy anything.
As I passed this Swartzentruber house in West Salem, there were about a dozen men sitting on the front porch visiting. As I continued past the house, I caught these three boys by the barn.
Typical Swartzentruber house, easily identified by blue front door and red barn.
An Amish implement taking a Sunday break. It’s fascinating that at one time ALL Americans likely used an implement like this to complete their farm work.
These young girls were playing on the front porch of this Swartzentruber home.
With the benches on the front porch, one may guess that church had been at this house.
I passed many buggies driving home from church or going to someone’s home for a Sunday visit.
I caught these young girls walking down the road….one with shoes and the other in bare feet.
I am sure they were having a nice visit and hoping they got to their destination before more rain came. Notice the distinct Sunday dress as different from every day dress.
This is an Old Order Amish home/farm just north of Ashland. It takes on a different look from the Swartzentruber home.
All buildings are white and just comes across with a “more kept” look.
I was hoping to get a shot like this. It was obvious to me that church had been held at this Ashland Old Order Amish home.
A number of buggies remained, likely for visiting and an evening meal, as this was taken around 5:00 pm.
The horses were gathered around a wagon that had hay on it, and the children, dressed in their Sunday best, were enjoying time on the swing set.
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I relaxed just reading the description. That is how Sunday was done in my childhood. Except for playing in Sunday best. We had to remove them and but on play clothes.
No place i would rather be
Very much appreciate your commentary and sharing your pictures. It’s interesting to see these homes when I’m used to Lancaster County homes. They all have their own charm.
Sunday Afternoon in Ashland County
Thank you for your comments. Although it was a rainy day, it was still very peaceful and I was glad to get the shots I did. I am planning on going to Holmes County Ohio on Thursday this week, hoping to get some more great shots. Regards, Mike
I am concerned to see this. Where I live my next door neighbors are amish and many of them surround us. They do not EVER want up to take their picture. Why was someone taking pictures of these people in the Ohio article. Did they know it was happening
Sunday Afternoon in Ashland County Ohio
I appreciate your comments on the photos I took in Ashland County. Certainly, I can appreciate your comments and I do understand that being photographed creates a “graven image” and that’s why the Amish don’t pose for pictures. I can assure you that during my visits to various communities, I certainly do not ask Amish to pose, but there are some pictures that I feel add to the story. The kids by the barn knew that I was taking the picture. On that same farmstead, there were a dozen men on the porch and I could have taken one of them, but opted to pass for the very reason you describe. The young girls walking down the road had no idea as their backs were turned to me the entire time. I am very respectful of their culture while trying to capture the beauty and innocence of their culture at the same time.
It makes it “better” that the girls had no idea because their backs were turned? Better because they don’t know a total stranger took their picture and posted it online? Don’t get me wrong — I have enjoyed “visiting” Amish communities vicariously through beautiful photos like yours, but I will admit I am rather uncomfortable in knowing some of the conservative Amish would be troubled to know they are on display like this. It’s a complex subject, I suppopse.