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Growing up with Amish Neighbors

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By Richard Prunty

The one thing I remember about Amish homes when I was growing up is that they were scrubbed so clean that I swear you could eat off the floor.  All the adult Amish were constantly busy With their Gardens, canning, cleaning Their barn.  We kids, on the other hand, had a lot of time to play. We all had chores to do like mowing the lawn, weeding the garden but once those chores were done we were free to roam.  No one ever worried about us in the Station. It was a simpler time and stranger danger just did not exist. Besides everyone in the Station knew everyone else who lived there and everyone watched over the rest of the neighborhood.

The Amish boys were all very good at baseball. That seemed to be their sport.  They knew how to throw a knuckle ball, a curve, a split finger ball and they practiced their pitching to the point they were very good.  Almost every day you would see two boys playing catch.  They would take turns pitching and catching and do that for hours.

My sister, brother, and I were a trio that played together, backed each other up if a fight got started, and watched each other’s back. It made us close as a family and that closeness has stayed with us as we grew older.  Television existed for us but I remember being told to get out of the house and to go play outside.  Mom had things to do and we were cluttering up the place.  There were no video games or cell phones or the modern distractions that exist today.  We also had our own quiet times to ourselves.  I loved reading and, for me, getting some time to climb a big tree and sit up in the branches to enjoy a nice summer breeze while reading a book was a bit of heaven.

The 50s at Burton Station was a great place to grow up. As I got older, I appreciated having all that space to hunt and explore. I loved that our road was not a main highway so we could bike it and not worry about the traffic.  We had sled riding hills and swimming holes, room to play.  What more could you ask for?

The Honor Roll listing the names of people who lived in the Station and served in the military is a great example of the community that is Burton Station.  The Louma brothers took the time to list veterans who served from World War I to today and put up the memorial to honor those who served.  I know this effort was a private one and it speaks to the pride of the people who still live in the Station.

This is part four of a four-part story by Richard Prunty who grew up in Burton Station in the 50s and 60s.  The first three parts were published in previous Middlefield Post editions and are available at www.middlefieldpost.com.  

Thank you to Sheoga Hardwood Flooring & Paneling for supporting articles by local veterans. Sheoga Hardwoods is located at 15320 Burton Windsor Road, Middlefield, 440-834-1710.

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