The Swartzentruber Amish came to North Carolina in 2015, becoming the second Amish community in the state (not second ever, but second at that time). Since then, the community seems to have grown a bit, but not at a very fast pace.
But now a home is up for sale – online – in this community, which might not be a good sign for the settlement. Someone is likely moving away (perhaps to a similar southern Swartzentruber settlement, like in Ethridge, TN or Pontotoc County, MS). And there is a limited pool of buyers given that this is a small community.
I don’t know if this would signal that they simply want to widen the potential buyer pool, or a sign that Amish might be leaving in greater numbers and the trend has started going in the opposite direction. I hope not. And I can’t call them to check as this group doesn’t have phones.
In any case, it’s not the first time we’ve seen a Swartzentruber Amish home go up for sale over the internet (here’s one in Maine, and another in New York). Even the most tech-averse Amish group is open to having their homes sold online.
From the Zillow description:
Multi-use property. Great Ellenboro location that’s about an hour from Charlotte, Hickory, Asheville and Greenville SC. 27 +/- acres has been used as a residence and farm. Multiple structures that include 2872sqft main home, 1440sqft second home, a 30×48 metal barn and several purposeful outbuildings.
Both homes need finishing as they don’t have electricity or conventional plumbing, and drywall needs to be completed. Electricity is readily available and water is currently supplied from a well ran by a generator.
Property is highlighted by a 6.5 acre fenced in pasture with pond, several garden spaces and short range mountain views. This self-sufficient land would be great for updating or leave it be as a less complex way of living. No permits are on file and no septic installed.
Hat tip to reader Erin Bowman for sending this one to me, by the way. As there’s no “Amish” keyword on the page, I probably would have missed this one if she hadn’t. Let’s have a look at the home.
Inside the kitchen one thing you notice immediately is the flooring. The floor material is the same throughout. No linoleum or vinyl here. Swartzentruber wood floors are coated in linseed oil.
Another angle gives us a better look at the cooking area. What might appear to be a crock pot on the left is most likely a kerosene cook stove.
Here’s a closer look at that.
And the spackle-spotted pantry, neat and tidy.
Here we see the typically spartan but pleasant living area. No upholstered furniture in these plainest Amish homes.
Rocking chairs are more typical in Swartzentruber Amish homes.
And so are blue-painted doors and molding.
The listing describes it as having eight bedrooms, but most of them appear to be unfinished. This is one of the more finished-looking ones. Not the first time I’ve seen rifles hung above the bed in an Amish home.
Upstairs, there appears to be more work to do, as with a good bit of this home.
No bathrooms in this home, as is the way of things with the most conservative Amish groups.
There’s more of the unfinished look when we check out this closed-in area that might be a patio of sorts. Swartzentruber Amish seem to be alright with leaving parts of their homes like this for extended periods of time. I believe it is about getting the structure up and then completing the home when the funds are available.
And you’ve also got an outside cook stove. No doubt more pleasant when canning and cooking in the hot and humid North Carolina summers. I know these summers well as NC is my home state.
And let’s take a quick look in the basement. We can notice the typical array of canned foods. But what’s that hanging there?
It looks like this family has set up a suspended food storage area. I would think this would let them keep foods in the cool of the underground while keeping them off the floor where critters might make themselves a meal. I see ketchup and possibly onions here?
The Second Home
Here is the second house mentioned in the description.
It has an unfinished look inside as well (you can check out more photos at the listing; there are nearly four dozen of this property in total).
So this home (or rather, homes) will take some work to complete and convert to English standards. But I have to say it is quite a nice property in a rural area of hills and small mountain views. Someone who appreciates plain Amish aesthetics could make themselves a very pleasant place to live here. So how much is this home, on 27+ acres of land, going for?
It’s currently on the market for $340,000. The agent is Eric Fowler of Mossy Oak Properties Carolina Timber & Realty.