MEET THE MENNONITES OF MONTEZUMA
By Kevin Williams
There is no Old Order Amish presence in Georgia. In fact, the Deep South as a whole has not been a place many Amish have settled. Not sure why. One obvious reason, though, could just be without electricity the idea of settling in the heart of Alabama might not be the most appealing. Winters would be pleasant, but not July. Still, the Amish have gradually made inroads into the South. Kentucky has a huge Amish population and Tennessee has a growing community. Mississippi is now home to a horse and buggy Amish community near Pontotoc. But Georgia? Not yet. But I wouldn't be surprised to see some Amish families arrive within the next few years. I think the South as a whole will begin looking more appealing to the Amish as land grows scarce elsewhere.
Georgia does, however, have a handful of Plain communities: Mennonites and Brethren,namely.
One community has captured my imagination for years, Georgia's oldest and largest Plain settlement: Montezuma, about an hour from Macon. The community began with a handful of families in the 1950s and today consists of about 180 families comprising three Mennonite churches. The Amish of Monetzuma are Beachy Amish Mennonites, so they use electricity, farm with tractors and drive cars. But they dress Plainly and hold on to many Amish traditions. Yoder is a common name here.
I would love to one day visit Montezuma, but I doubt it's going to happenterany time soon. So when my parents were driving through Georgia last week I suggested they visit for me. Mom and Dad usually like a little road trip off the freeway (especially Mom), so this would seem to have been right up their wheelhouse.
This article is rather old, but most of the information seems to have held up well, so click here to read even more about Montezuma.
Meanwhile, the photos you see with this post are ones my Dad took for us to enjoy. Stay tuned tomorrow to see what happened when I sent them to the "Holy Grail of Amish Cooking" in the South........