When people think Shaker they think clean lines, simplicity, and austerity. It's so hard to try to reconcile that with the religious fervor that lead to such an extreme lifestyle. Dancing worship, strange rituals on mountaintops. And then you look at their workshops and the things they produced: orderly, utilitarian.
Inside the iconic round barn? PIGLETS. Not even 24 hours old!
The village was established in 1791. This was their Utopia. At its height, there were about 200 residents, all celibate—not the best longevity plan. In the end, during the early Twentieth Century, there was only one man left. One man to farm and maintain and do all the things the Shakers believed were "Man Things."
And when he finally kicked the bucket, that last man - Brother Ricardo - came here. A neatly trimmed square fenced in wrought iron with a single obelisk marker in the center honoring the lives of all Shakers. Easily the most beautiful spot in the village.
(all photos were taken on my phone. I know, right?!)