A publication of the Indiana Business Research Center at IU's Kelley School of Business
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Indiana's Amish Population

Nineteen percent of the Amish in America live in Indiana. According to the latest U.S. Religious Census, approximately 241,000 Amish adherents1 were spread across 28 states in 2010 (see Figure 1). Ohio had the highest number of Amish (59,103), followed by Pennsylvania (58,009) and Indiana (45,144).

Figure 1: Number of Amish Adherents by State, 2010

Figure 1: Number of Amish Adherents by State, 2010

Source: IBRC, using Religious Congregations and Membership Study data

This article focuses on all Amish adherents and not solely Old Order Amish Mennonite due to new reporting methods. In 2010, a few religious bodies, including the Amish, changed the way their adherents were reported to better match the standards of the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies (ASARB).2 Because of the new reporting methods, comparing these data to earlier years is inadvisable.

Although Ohio had the most adherents, Indiana had the most Amish as a percent of total population (0.69 percent). Table 1 shows the top 10 states on this measure.

Table 1: Top 10 Amish Inhabited States by Percent of Total Population, 2010

  Rank State Adherents Percent
  1 Indiana 45,144 0.7%
  2 Ohio 59,103 0.5%
  3 Pennsylvania 58,009 0.5%
  4 Wisconsin 14,957 0.3%
  5 Iowa 7,179 0.2%
  6 Kentucky 8,172 0.2%
  7 Missouri 9,833 0.2%
  8 Delaware 1,424 0.2%
  9 Michigan 10,218 0.1%
10 New York 10,787 0.1%

Source: IBRC, using Religious Congregations and Membership Study and U.S. Census Bureau data

Figure 2 shows the number of adherents by county. Lancaster County, Pa., had the highest number of adherents (26,270). Holmes County, Ohio, came in second place with 17,654 Amish, and LaGrange County, Ind., came in third with 14,011 Amish.

Figure 2: Number of Amish Adherents by County, 2010

Figure 2: Number of Amish Adherents by County, 2010

Source: IBRC, using Religious Congregations and Membership Study data

Indiana had more counties in the top 10 in terms of Amish population as a percent of total population than any other state with three counties making the list (LaGrange County with 37.7 percent Amish, Adams County with 18.5 percent, and Daviess County with 11.7 percent). Table 2 shows the remaining top 10 counties nationwide.

Table 2: Top 10 Amish-Inhabited Counties by Percent of Total Population, 2010

  Ranking County State Adherents Percent
  1 Holmes County  Ohio 17,654 41.7%
  2 LaGrange County  Indiana 14,011 37.7%
  3 Adams County  Indiana 6,343 18.5%
  4 Davis County  Iowa 1,355 15.5%
  5 Douglas County  Illinois 2,361 11.8%
  6 Daviess County  Indiana 3,708 11.7%
  7 Vernon County  Wisconsin 2,786 9.4%
  8 Geauga County  Ohio 8,537 9.1%
  9 Hart County  Kentucky 1,646 9.0%
10 Moultrie County  Illinois 1,260 8.5%

Source: IBRC, using Religious Congregations and Membership Study data

Amish within Indiana

Of the 363 counties that reported an Amish population in 2010, 32 of those counties were in Indiana. In other words, more than one third of Indiana’s counties boasted an Amish population.

LaGrange County took the top spot with the highest number of Amish adherents in Indiana (14,011), followed by Adams and Elkhart counties, respectively (see Figure 3).

Figure 3: Number of Amish Adherents by Indiana County, 2010

Figure 3: Number of Amish Adherents by Indiana County, 2010

Source: IBRC, using Religious Congregations and Membership Study data

When looking at Amish as a percent of the county’s total population, many smaller counties expectedly climb the ranks. Martin County jumps into the top 10 with only 412 Amish adherents, but 4 percent of the county’s total population. Meanwhile, Elkhart County falls below some of the smaller counties and Allen County, with nearly 3,500 Amish adherents, doesn’t make the top 10 at all (see Table 3).

Table 3: Top 10 Amish-Inhabiting Counties in Indiana by Percent of Total Population, 2010

  Ranking County Adherents Percent
  1 LaGrange County 14,011 37.7%
  2 Adams County 6,343 18.5%
  3 Daviess County 3,708 11.7%
  4 Parke County 1,105 6.4%
  5 Jay County 1,024 4.8%
  6 Switzerland County 469 4.4%
  7 Martin County 412 4.0%
  8 Elkhart County 6,244 3.2%
  9 Marshall County 1,413 3.0%
10 Orange County 593 3.0%

For more information on county-level data, visit the Association of Religious Data Archives. Additional U.S. maps are available for download at the 2010 U.S. Religion Census site.

Notes

  1. Congregational "adherents" include all full members, their children and others who regularly attend services. Note that adherents are sometimes residents of a county different than the location of their congregation.
  2. The change in methodology can distort assessments on growth or decline between 2000 and 2010. County-level 2000 data using the new methodology are not readily available. ASARB staff has adjusted some 2000 county-level adherent statistics to allow for a more accurate picture on growth or decline. Revised maps and charts are available at www.usreligioncensus.org for those interested in these trends.

Molly Manns
Associate Editor, Indiana Business Research Center, Indiana University Kelley School of Business