I would like to dedicate these few lines to all members of the Amish Community I had the honor and opportunity to meet during my visit to Aroostook County. I also extend my thanks to my friend, without whom this would not have been possible.
You might be interested to know a bit more about the Amish…
The Amish Community settled in Pennsylvania, Lancaster County, in the early 18th century. They escaped persecution in Europe for their Anabaptist beliefs. The Pennsylvania Amish community in Lancaster County, is the oldest and largest Amish community in the United States.
Amish are conservative, emphasizing humility, family, community and separation from the non-Amish world, which includes a reluctance to adopt modern conveniences such as electricity.
Humility is the symbol of Amish beliefs. Mild and modest personalities are esteemed. Patience, waiting and yielding to others are marks of their Community. These ideals are maintained by keeping all work, play, worship, commerce and friendship within the Community itself.
They also prohibit habits that feed individualism and greed, as displayed through their plain dress style (mostly blue color, but some can also wear green) and prohibition of personal photographs (namely their faces). They travel by buggies, which are dark gray so they can merge into their surroundings, these buggies are driven by horses.
Children go to school up to Grade 8, schools are run by single Amish women and are very often situated within a walking distance of their homes. The teachers are chosen by a local school board of parents for their academic skill and ability and commitment to religious values and Amish views. The Amish speak English while talking to a non Amish person, several of them speak Pennsylvania Dutch while talking among themselves. This language is not a written one.
One of the Maine Amish Community is based near Fort Fairfield, Aroostook County. Like the other Amish settlements in Maine, the Fort Fairfield Amish are a small group, belonging to a single church district. Amish in this very plain group supplement their farming with small businesses, including a dry goods store and furniture, metal works for roofs and watch repair. Some of them also work during potato harvest.
Thank you so much for all these memorable moments!