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Chapter 1 (v.1) - Roots

Submitted: July 29, 2016

Reads: 131

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Submitted: July 29, 2016













Early morning, Elizabeth Dawson drives to New Lancaster as she does every month on a regular visits to sees her Amish cousins. The date is January 27, 2125, her great grandmother, Rebecca Leslie King Dawson, birthday. Born in January 27, 2014, Rebecca is one of fourteen children, only 7 children survived to adulthood with 6 children dying from the flu and Rebecca younger brother, Henry died in childbirth, killing her mother.

Elizabeth still has her great grandmother’s Amish dresses and her original black/white bonnet. Rebecca left her community at age 18, as one of the first five Amish members to have a high school education. Since Rebecca left, the Dawson family celebrates their Amish heritage.

Along the road to New Lancaster, Elizabeth sees a group of three Amish teenagers. She knows she is close to New Lancaster. The three girls are Sarah Lynn, Wilma, and Francine Swartzentruber, great grand daughters of Samuel, son of Noah Swartzentruber.

Noah Swartzentruber is one of the 13 founding fathers of Minnesota Amish. Noah arrived in 2012 from their community in Minnesota, watching 12 children die from a deadly flu epidemic of Virulent Delta Flu. Death occurs in 8 out of 10 cases of Delta flu. As part of his many descendents, Sarah Lynn, Wilma, and Francine Swartzentruber live as Minnesota Amish.

Sarah Lynn notices Elizabeth’s ford green explorer, knowing about the visit as January 27. Elizabeth stops as Sarah Lynn approaches the open window.

“Nice to see Elizabeth, how are you doing?” Sarah Lynn asks in English. Minnesota Amish learns English as a secondary language as German is primary, with several different forms.

“I am doing fine. Are you going to the celebration?” Elizabeth asks

“Yes, we are traveling to Rebecca Leslie King’s graves.” Sarah Lynn asks, “I know you are going.”


Sarah Lynn and her two sisters travel with Elizabeth in her vehicle to the parking lot of the Amish community center. Sarah Lynn is 18 years of age, dating Robert King’s son Hunter King. Robert King is Elizabeth’s Amish Uncle Amos sons. The three sisters wear black bonnets, single sisters, with ankle dark navy length dresses, a black wool cloak, and black leather shoes. Sarah Lynn and her sister chat with Elizabeth as she drives. Sarah Lynn notices a red-black beaded cross hanging from her center mirror.

“Where did you get the cross?” Francine asks

“My boyfriend gives me the cross.” Elizabeth says

“Who is the boyfriend?” Wilma asks. Wilma is 16 years of age, Francine’s twin sister. Known as the Swartzentruber sisters, Sarah Lynn, Francine, and Wilma is three out of 20 children.

“Is he nice? What is he like?” Francine asks

“My boyfriend is a nice guy, a sweetheart. Why do you ask?” Elizabeth says as she tries to hide her boyfriend. Elizabeth pulls into the Amish culture center parking lot.


Cousins, Rebecca and Katherine King see Elizabeth and the Swartzentruber sisters. Rebecca King Walder is one of 6 daughters of Amos King and Cathy Miller. Rebecca’s husband, Hutterite Thomas Walder, waits with Amos King at the entrance of the Amish Cemetery. With Thomas is Widow Naomi Decker, Leslie’s niece and daughter of Naomi, Leslie’s sister. In her late 70’s and early 80’s, Naomi Decker is the daughter of Emma Katie (Kate) King and Peter Raber, nephew of Isaiah Raber and son of Harriet Raber, Isaiah’s sister.

Peter Raber and Emma King had one child, Naomi May King Raber. Peter died from Meningitis when Naomi May is four year of age, leaving her an orphan. Naomi May’s mother died at birth with her. As a mother of 10 children, grandmother of 120, and great grandmother of many, Naomi May lives with her daughter, Ruth Ann Yoder.


Matriarch and protector of knowledge, Naomi May Decker protects the memory of Rebecca Leslie King Dawson. Naomi May Decker sees Elizabeth, knowing that Elizabeth honors her great grandmother. Dressed in regular clothing, Elizabeth is the only one non-English at the celebration.

Elizabeth, in the Amish center changing room, changes into her navy ankle dress with sleeves. She places a black cloak over her shoulders. Her black bonnet is her great grandmother, Rebecca Leslie. Naomi May Decker respects Elizabeth’s honoring of Rebecca Leslie.

At the honor celebration, Elizabeth walks to her great grandmother’s grave. Part of Leslie’s ashes is in a wooden box under a nice grave stone ‘Rebecca Leslie King Dawson, January 27, 2014-February 12, 2078’.

Elizabeth’s uncle Amos King stands with his wife, Cathy Miller King. Cathy Miller King is an Amish from Holmes County, Ohio. She arrived at age 17, during her rumspringa. She married Amos King at age 21, having her first children, her son Abram, ten months after marriage. At age 49, Cathy is a mother of 12 children and grandmother of 10 children.

Son Abram King stands next to his parents, with his wife Sadie Hilty King (ex-Swiss Amish). With them, Abram (28) and Sadie (26) have their 4 children and her growing belly of number 5, only 16 months after the birth of son, Mark.

Swiss Amish is different then old order Amish. Culture different from Old Order Amish, Swiss Amish speaks a different dialect, Swiss German. Sadie Hilty is from Quincy, Branch County, Michigan. She learns Amish German from a school shared by Amish and Swiss Amish. She and her older sister, Fannie moved to New Lancaster. Sadie arrived as a 16 year of age teenager as her sister, Fannie Hilty Schwartz, aged 21, and husband Abraham Schwartz, aged 25, are newly weds.

Ten years later, Fannie Hilty (31) and Abraham Schwartz (35) have eight children, preparing for their ninth child. Abraham works as a horse trainer. Next with Sadie is Ruth Stutz King, wife of Ray King. Second son of Amos and Cathy King, Ray King and wife Ruth Stutz have had reproductive problems in their marriage. Their daughters, Rebecca and Mariana are 24 months old, twin girls.

Ruth Stutz King has lost her ability to have more children. Their daughters will not be alone as Ruth’s sister, Magdalena died by a car accident, leaving six children behind. Ruth takes her five nephews and one niece to live them. Ruth and Ray plan to take in orphans when they arrive in Victoria.


With the small number of relatives at the fifteen minute celebration of Leslie’s life, Elizabeth stands next to Katherine, aged 18, and Rebecca, aged 22. Naomi Decker speaks about her aunt Leslie, ‘She always is a dreamer, dreaming of something better then herself. She did her choirs as an Amish girl should; she would walk into the fields, enjoys nature, and daydreaming’.

At the small gathering, the community celebrates the winter as a gift and gives thanks for the snow which will improve the fields. Hutterite, Swiss German, and Amish German are the main languages here, with English as a secondary language.

New Lancaster is home to all of the Amish groups and Minnesota Amish & Minnesota


Hutterite. Amish follow an ordnung that governs all aspects of their lives. The community of New Lancaster celebrates an annual winter event of Winter Feast. Winter Feast occurs in Minnesota Amish, celebrating winter and varies activities occur during the event. Amish groups gather at winter feast, to celebrate winter activities and find potential unrelated mates from other sister/daughter communities.

Winter Feast starts as Elizabeth watches the winter feast inside the Amish restaurant, Sarah’s. Owner of Sarah’s Amish restaurant, Sarah Swartzentruber is daughter of Swartzentruber deacon Noah Swartzentruber and wife Rebecca. Sarah and her family joined the Minnesotan Amish after an argument lead to stunning (avoidance). One of twenty children, Sarah Swartzentruber married Benjamin Swartzentruber, a former member of TN Ethridge Swartzentruber Amish.

Swartzentruber Amish is the strictest; with the only technology used involves 2 cell batteries and gas (kerosene) lamps. Benjamin left his community during rumspringa, at age 16. He did not come back to his family, moving to Victoria.

Minnesotan Amish is a combination of all Amish Groups, bringing all groups together. Starting in 2012, during a flu epidemic and moving groups around, Minnesotan Amish started a group of ten founders and their families. Minnesota Hutterite is mix of Dariuslest, Lehrerleut, and Schmeidleut.

Rebecca King is Minnesota Amish, wear long ankle-length dresses with long sleeves and white aprons. Rebecca wears black bonnet (married) as her sister, Katherine wears her brown bonnet (single). Amish women wear a white bonnet as married and a black bonnet as single or special events, weddings and Sunday church. Minnesota Amish women wear many colors of dresses as some Amish groups wear darker colors.

Elizabeth seats with Katherine (Kate) King at Sarah’s restaurant, at the window seat. As they talk, Ruth Zook greets Kate (short for Katherine) with a hug. Ruth Zook is one of the fifteen Nebraska Amish living in New Lancaster. Ruth, as a Nebraska Amish, wears a scarf and long dark dress. She has longer hair under her scarf. Ruth moved with her four sisters and four unrelated males. The five other Nebraska Amish is Ruth’s Aunt Rebecca, Uncle Thomas, and their four sons. Ruth Zook married Thomas Zook, unrelated male from Holmes, OH, last year. Elizabeth sees Ruth’s belly, knowing she is expecting a baby. Ruth and Thomas work in a clothing store.

Ruth shares Katherine and Elizabeth, the ultra sound results of she is having a boy. Minnesota Amish/Hutterite communities have a community hospital that English towns use them as well as Amish and Hutterite Colonies. Ruth arrives four years ago as her future husband; Thomas Zook arrived two weeks before her.

Minnesota Amish has government grant hospitals that allow the government to determine Amish population through birth records and IDs. The Amish stay out of the government as the government still remains distant at the same time. Amish receive benefits as the government receives their information.


Emmeline Troyer, a 19 year of age Troyer Amish transport from Michigan, greets Ruth Zook with A hug. Emmeline join the Minnesota Amish at age 15 after a family dispute. Her and her sister, Sarah Troyer (18), leaves four years ago after their father, Joseph Troyer threaten to shun Sarah. Emmeline went with her sister, Sarah, to Minnesota.

Emmeline wears dark blue ankle length dresses with black bonnet. She is a high school graduate, becoming a midwife with her internship with several senior midwives. Emmeline is not dating anyone. During a routine physically when she first arrived, Emmeline find out that she is not able to carry children to full term, still able to have children.

Emmeline works as a nurse in the community hospital, earning her degree in nursing. She left her community, living with sister, Sarah and husband Thomas Stutzman. Emmeline dresses in her traditional Amish dress and bonnet. She often assists in births and small minor injuries.

Elizabeth arrives back from New Lancaster by 5 pm and her marriage stays secret. As she looks on the


internet in her bedroom, Elizabeth reads an article.

Is David Montgomery married? The reclusive and secretive billionaire reveals nothing of his personal life and makes predicting if he married, difficult. In one photo of his, he is wearing a ring on his left hand. David is seen at a courthouse, with a women with him covered to protect his identify. The judge is not talking to us.” Justin Houston

Elizabeth breathes a sign of relief that no evidence of their marriage is public and her identify protected. The marriage crisis is minor compared to the growing problem that Victoria will soon face.

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