Shaker Heritage Society
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- 98%History Buffs
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- Shaker Heritage SocietyFirst to ReviewNov 06, 2013
The United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing (aka the Shakers), formed in Manchester, England during the later years of the 18th century and emigrated to upstate New York, led by the mystic prophet Mother Ann. Watervliet Shaker Historic District is the site of the first Shaker community, established in 1776--Mother Ann is buried here in the beautiful grounds minutes away from the modern Albany airport. The Shakers held the then-radical ideals of equality of labor, gender, and race, and practiced communal property and pacifism (during and after the American War of Independence), simplicity in dress, furniture, and architecture. Their hard work, taking in of orphans, and ability to make and trade quality goods made them a driving force in the agricultural, industrial, commercial, and institutional activities of the day. Their belief in celibacy eventually caused them to die out. The last Shaker left Watervliet in 1925. Watervliet's historic 1848 Shaker meetinghouse has been restored and is used for public events, such as concerts and a Christmas craft fair from late October to the third week in December.
There are several Shaker communities in the greater Albany area; the largest was the Shaker Village located to the southeast in Mount Lebanon (the museum there holds a large collection of textiles and furniture). Several Shaker communities are in the process of joining together in order to create a cohesive experience for visitors to learn about and appreciate this fascinating group of believers .Recommended for: