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5 Colorful Amish Buggies

What color are Amish buggies?

In this blog, we will cover the five different colors of Amish buggies used in the United States. You might be surprised by just how many colors buggies come in! 

Lancaster County Gray

We’re a little bias when we say we think the gray buggies are the prettiest! This color is used by the Amish settlement here in Lancaster County. When members of the Lancaster Amish community move and start new settlements in other states, it is common for those new groups to use the same gray buggy.

Horse and buggy.

Bright Yellow

The rarest and most striking color of them all‑ yellow. The Byler Amish community in Belleville, PA is the only community that uses these bright yellow buggies. This community is often called the “yellow‑toppers”. Funny enough the men in this community are also known for only wearing one suspender.

Yellow topped Amish buggies.

Brown Buggies

This color buggy is found in the Amish communities of New Wilmington, PA and related settlements in Montgomery County, New York.

An amish buggy with a brown top.

White As Snow

White buggies are driven by the “Nebraska Amish”. Their name is quite misleading because this Amish group is located mainly in Mifflin County, PA and in Ohio. The Nebraska Amish are the second most conservative subgroup of the Amish. And just like their white buggies, the men are only permitted to wear white shirts.

A white topped Amish buggy.

Black

Black is by far the most common buggy color. However, not every black buggy has the same shape or design. The black buggy used by the Dover Amish looks different than the black buggy in Ohio and different from those in Juniata, PA.

A black topped Amish buggy.

Why the different colors?

The Amish are very conservative and traditional. You would think they would’ve simply chosen one color and stuck with it. However, they are very practical people and the different choices of colors simply boils down to the materials available to each group.

All carriages were open until the 1800’s. Depending on when a community started to cover their buggies determined which material and what color was available to them.

Why White? Why Yellow?

For example, the white buggies in Mifflin County started when members would use a white linen cloth to cover the buggy. As time progressed, they needed to waterproof the linen cloth. At that time, you could purchase paint that would essentially waterproof cloth. This paint was yellow.

White and yellow topped buggies.

Practical and Traditional

Now, the continued use of the color of your buggy establishes fidelity to your particular community. The Amish in New Wilmington, PA found brown material to cover their buggies way back in the day, and now it is their established color.

Shape Matters

Although black is the most common color for Amish buggies, it doesn’t mean all black buggies are from the same settlement. There are varied shapes and designs to Amish buggies.
In this picture you can see the black buggies in Montana have a diagonal cut at the bottom.

An Amish buggy from Montana, featuring a diagonally shapped bottom.

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Passenger Only

The buggy is the traditional means of transportation for the Amish. However, they are permitted to travel by car if they are in the passenger seat. Amish are not allowed to drive motorized vehicles.
We like to call the folks who transport the Amish “Amish Uber Drivers” 🤣🤣🤣🤣

Value of Community

As we’ve learned, there are 5 different buggy colors: gray, black, yellow, white and brown.
While each settlement may have its own color and traditions, they are still Amish no matter their differences.

Want to See More?

If you want to learn more about Amish buggies, The Amish Farm and House is here to help! At The Amish Farm and House, we offer many tour options. These tours are fun for the whole family, and will help you learn about Amish life. View our tour options today, or contact us to gain more information about our farm.

Written on January 22nd 2021

Photo Credits:

  1. George Sheldon Stock Photos 2. Annies Creative Shots 3. Froggy7mom 4. Momisageek 5. The Amish Country Insider 6. Pennlive 7. Deb Scherrer 8. Juniata River Valley. Cover: Brent Shetler
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