Fascinating Fact Friday – The Amish at Work

Hello, AmishReaders! Every Friday for the month of May, we’re going to be sharing fascinating facts about the Amish and their way of life. Our thanks go out to Mindy Starns Clark and her very helpful book A Pocket Guide to Amish Life. We hope these fun and interesting insights into Amish living will only increase your reading enjoyment of Amish novels.

The Amish at Work

Traditionally, the primary occupation of the Amish has been farming, for several reasons:

• In the early days of the Anabaptist movement, many fled into the countryside to avoid persecution. There they learned farming skills, which they later brought to America.
• The Amish believe that according to Scripture, farming is a sacred lifestyle and a way to connect closely with God.
• Farm work helps ingrain many Amish values, including a strong work ethic, patience, and simplicity.

The average Amish farm in Lancaster County has about 70 acres, and the crops commonly include corn, tobacco, alfalfa, and various grains. Unfortunately, rising land costs and decreased availability are prohibiting many younger Amish from continuing the farming tradition. Nowadays, the Amish work not only on farms but also in other trades, factories, restaurants, retail establishments, and so on. They are also starting up their own home-based businesses in record numbers.

With the shift into entrepreneurship, of course, comes all sorts of challenges to the Amish way of life—new technologies, less time spent at home with family, and even mothers working outside of the home. How the Amish will face these challenges and continue to maintain an agrarian lifestyle remains to be seen.

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One Response to “Fascinating Fact Friday – The Amish at Work”

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