Taking a step back into history is easy when stopping by the Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, in Harrodsburg, KY. This restored farm will quickly reveal what it was like to live as a Shaker in the early 1800's.
More than 14 original buildings remain on this farm, and there are 34 buildings altogether that have been restored on more than 3,000 acres of farmland. Tourists are able to walk through them at their own leisure and enjoy the simplicity of the Shaker community.
The community building, which was the center of life among the Shakers, has more than 40 rooms for guests and is well furnished with original Shaker furniture. Guided tours are also provided of this Center Family Dwelling.
Walking through the Shaker Village, guests will be able to see and learn much about how they lived, the way they dressed, worked and played. Visitors will also see a number of crafts being demonstrated using the very techniques the Shakers used to make brooms, work the wood products, weaving, and the crafters will be using the same tools and buildings that they used in that day.
The Shakers are also known for their beliefs, too, and visitors will be able to learn about that in the Shaker Village also. The Shakers had come out of the Quaker movement, and are known for their advanced views of equality of race and of the sexes.
The Shaker Village is the restored site of one of eight such villages that ever existed in the United States. There are 81 rooms available for lodging, and each one is designed with the decor and furnishings of the Shakers. This makes each room a step into the past, but the rooms do have modern things such as air conditioning, phones, TV, and private baths.
Tour guides are from the local community and are dressed in Shaker apparel, which adds to the wonderful flavor of the community. Visitors will also see horse carriages, stone fences, and other unique features of the Shakers. Meals are served in the main dining facility - the Trustee's Office - where visitors can enjoy the fine cooking of the community three times a day. Performances of music also can be heard in the main meeting house.
There is a riverboat called the Dixie Bell that offers rides from April through November. These one-hour guided tours present how the river was used by the Shakers to help make their community a thriving success. They also travel along high cliffs of limestone and other natural beauty.
The Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, Harrodsburg, KY, also has special presentations about the Shaker way of life at various times of the year. These exhibits are educational and cultural and can also be a great time to visit.
The Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, Harrodsburg, KY, is about 25 miles from Lexington, which means that there are other things to see in the area, as well. A craft store allows visitors to take with them some of the food, the music, the crafts, and some books about the Shakers for a truly memorable experience of this village of the 19th century.