'Tis a Gift to be Simple: Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village

  • 01 of 10

    Welcome to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village

    Picture of Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village in Maine.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    Pictures of the Last Active Shaker Community in New Gloucester, Maine

    Whether or not you know much about the Shakers, you've probably heard the words of the Shaker hymn: "'Tis a gift to be simple." Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village in New Gloucester, Maine, is home to the last active Shaker community, and a visit will allow you to appreciate the Shaker ideals of self-sufficiency and simplicity.

    I took these pictures of Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village on an early autumn day in 2006, and I hope they will provide you with a glimpse of the Shaker way of life. As of 2011, there are only three remaining members of the Sabbathday Lake community, and with their devotion to celibacy and inability to attract many modern recruits, the Shakers are an endangered sect.

    Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village and its museum and store are open to the public Monday through Saturday from Memorial Day through Columbus Day. The 1,800-acre complex is located just off Route 26 in western Maine.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 2 of 10 below.
  • 02 of 10

    An Early Autumn Visit

    Early Autumn Day at the Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village in Maine.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 3 of 10 below.
  • 03 of 10

    Working the Land

    The Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village is located on 1,800 acres in western Maine.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 4 of 10 below.
  • 04 of 10

    Shaker Dwelling

    This brick building serves as the living quarters for three remaining Shakers at Sabbathday Lake.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Shaker Store

    The Shaker Store at Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village in New Gloucester, Maine, is open to the public.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 6 of 10 below.
  • 06 of 10

    Shaker Antiques and Handcrafted Products

    Inside the Shaker Store, you'll find items handcrafted by the remaining Shakers and Shaker antiques.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 7 of 10 below.
  • 07 of 10

    Tour the Village

    Guided tours of the Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village are available. The Village also has a museum.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 8 of 10 below.
  • 08 of 10

    Ancient Breed

    Picture of Highland cattle at Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village in Maine.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Communal in Life and Death

    A stone wall surrounds the Shaker Cemetery.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.

    Continue to 10 of 10 below.
  • 10 of 10

    An Endangered Sect

    Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village cemetery photo.
    © 2006 Kim Knox Beckius, licensed to About.com.

    These pictures from an early autumn visit to Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village provide a glimpse of the life of America's last remaining Shakers.