We stopped by the annual auction at the Fivepointville Firehouse last weekend. There was an abundance of farm and garden equipment for sale, along with household materials, bicycles and buggies. There is a large Old Order Mennonite community in the Fivepointville area plus Amish so many people arrived by buggy or bicycle. It was a beautiful spring day to enjoy the action.
Old Order Mennonites ride bicycles in addition to using the black buggies (Amish do not ride bicycles). While Amish only use solid colors in their clothes, Old Order Mennonites dress plain but use small prints and different styles. Head dress is also different between the two groups. The round large brimmed straw hats in the top picture are Amish, while the black and natural straw hats with the more narrow brim are Old Order Mennonite.
Don’t you love girls with braids?
People arrived using all types of transportation. In general the black buggies are Old Order Mennonite and Pennsylvania Amish buggies are gray.
With temperatures hovering around freezing, it was a frosty morning for the horse pulling the Old Order Mennonite buggy. (The Mennonite buggies are black while Amish buggies in this part of Pennsylvania are gray.)
The Amish and Old Order Mennonite children enjoy a break from school during the summer. However, rather than spending time at the pool or playing video games, they are helping on the farm, working in the garden and manning the produce stands that are in front of many of the homes. Lancaster County has over 200 one-room Amish and Mennonite schools. More information on the Amish educational system and photos can be found here.
The Amish farmers use tobacco as a cash crop and most dairy farms have several rows of tobacco growing in front of the corn.The corn, which is plentiful in this area, is used to feed the dairy cows. While it has been a very dry summer, the corn is still green and our conditions do not compare to the current drought conditions in the mid-west. Praying for all of our farmers who face difficult growing circumstances but continue to work the land.
It is time for spring plowing and planting. This is an Old Order Mennonite farmer with a team of five mules working his field.
There are two different “horse and buggy” groups who live in this area — Old Order Amish and Old Order Mennonite. They differ in their dress and customs but share many practices such as using the horse and buggy for transportation. Both groups grew out of the Anabaptist movement and share an agricultural heritage. I think they are planting tobacco in the photo above. Tobacco is used for a cash crop for many of the local farmers. Continue reading →