Ethridge, Tennessee's Amish community made USA Today yesterday. Not sure why. The article's only real angle is that the Amish settlement there - like in so many other places - is really growing. The Ethridge Amish are especially conservative, belonging to the Swartzentruber sect. I visited Ethridge last year in the middle of a stifling summer heat wave. I found the Amish I met to be quite hospitable, but much more standoffish than other communities. While photography is often tacitly tolerated in many even conservative Amish communities (of their buggies or gardens, for instance), the Amish I visited wouldn't even allow that. So I respectfully complied and just scenes from public roads. But that's the last impression I have of Ethridge is just the conservative community that it is. We chronicle Ethridge in our upcoming cookbook, Amish Cooks Across America. The food in Ethridge's Amish community has a definite southern flair: cornbread, okra, homemade molasses, and baked beans, for instance. Yum!:) Hereare a few photos - some of the few - we were able to take in Ethridge. Definitely captures the southern flavor! Click here to read the USA Today article about the community.
We spent two days in Ethridge last month. I stopped and chatted with some ladies working the garden. Had a nice conversation with a young girl catching gold fish(?) but she didn't invite me to see them. People seemed friendly. I really wanted to take a picture of the produce auction wares. Such beautiful veggies they were selling. But since I was on the platform, decided not to.