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Amish facts and stats


■ New York has nearly 15,000 Amish residents, up from about 4,700 in 2001. They live in 47 settlements spread across 22 counties.

■ Cattaraugus County leads the state, with 16 Amish church districts comprising about 2,100 residents.

■ There was an Amish settlement in Croghan, Lewis County, as early as 1833, but over time many of its members moved away or began to identify with the less conservative Mennonite movement. The state’s next settlement wasn’t founded until 1949 in Cattaraugus County, followed by St. Lawrence County settlements in Norfolk and Heuvelton in 1974.

■ In Northern New York today: Lewis County — two church districts, estimated 270 residents

Jefferson County — three districts, estimated 405 residents

St. Lawrence County — 15 districts, estimated 2,025 residents

■ There are about 250,000 Amish in the United States and Canada. Given large families and increasing numbers of adult children who remain in the faith, experts predict they will top the 1 million mark by 2050.

■ Holmes County, Ohio, is on track to become the nation’s first Amish-majority county within 20 years. St. Lawrence County’s first Swartzentruber settlers came from Holmes County and surrounding areas in search of good, cheap land and more open space.


“New York Amish: Life in the Plain Communities of the Empire State” by Karen M. Johnson-Weiner

“The Amish Population: County Estimates and Settlement Patterns” an Ohio State University study by Joseph Donnermeyer, Cory Anderson and Elizabeth Cooksey

“New York Amish settlements: Counties, Settlements and Districts, 2012-2013” by the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies, Elizabethtown College

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