Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy & Safe New Year

Amish Farm Near Charm, Holmes County, Ohio

As I write these words, the Weather Channel is predicting a high in the mid-fifties for northeast Ohio on Christmas Day, without a trace of the snow blanketing the ground in the photo above, taken in 1995 near the village of Charm in Holmes County, Ohio. More than 23,000 Amish live in Holmes County, which has more Amish than any other United States county except Lancaster County in eastern Pennsylvania, where about 30,000 Amish make their home.

Like their “English” (i.e. non-Amish) neighbors, Amish families also celebrate Christmas, but in a quiet, family-centered way, with minimal gift exchanges. Santa Claus, decorated Christmas trees and the Grinch are not part of an Amish Christmas, though many Amish place candles in the windows of their home, which may also be decorated with greenery and displays of Christmas cards. Amish children often send hand-made Christmas cards to their neighbors and non-Amish friends, which may include “Frehlicher Grischtdaag” – “Merry Christmas” in the Pennsylvania Dutch dialect. 

May you and your family enjoy a Merry Christmas, and a happy, healthy, and safe New Year.

Ian Adams, Fuji and Spicer





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