If you’re fascinated by history, the Amish and Mennonite Heritage Center is a great attraction for you to visit while in Ohio Amish Country. Take a trip back in time by gazing at gorgeous murals that depict the story of how the Amish and Mennonite culture came to be. Then, use our complimentary Vacation Guide to discover more historical sites, outdoor excursions, and restaurants you need to visit during your stay. Get the guide to complete your trip to our beautiful area.
What You’ll Experience at the Amish and Mennonite Heritage Center
Take a Tour of Behalt Cyclorama
Taking a tour of Behalt Cyclorama is one of the the best things to do at the Heritage Center. Come marvel at this astonishing 10-foot by 265-foot circular mural painted with oils on canvas. Cycloramas are typically used to depict a long timeline filled with multiple stories. In this case, the stunning mural documents the religious fight of the Amish and Mennonite people. In addition, Behalt means “to keep, hold, and remember,” which the painting clearly does my memorializing the Amish and Mennonite Heritage.
The History Within the Behalt Cyclorama
The mural begins in Zurich, Switzerland, in 1525 depicting the first, modern adult baptisms. As you move along, you travel through time watching the Anabaptist movement spread worldwide, bringing forth the Mennonites and Amish people. The storyline then continues up to the present day. This masterpiece is attributed to a sole artist, Heinz Gaugel, who created this piece in 1978 so visitors could better understand the Amish and Mennonite culture embedded within Holmes County.
There’s even more to see at the Heritage Center. Take a look at an original Conestoga Wagon that transported early settlers and pioneers here to Holmes County. You’ll also enjoy learning about the onsite one-room schoolhouse and will marvel over the restored Pioneer Barn that’s filled with Amish artifacts. Finally, wrap up your tour exploring more of the Mennonite culture through a display of devotional coverings that are also used in the present day, and say farewell as you pass artist Heinz Gaugel’s mural titled “Immigrants’ Arrival in the New World.”
Retreat to the White Oak Inn after you explore the Amish and Mennonite Heritage Center. On the second floor of the Main House, you’ll find The Ash Room. Open the door to be greeted by two, large windows overlooking the forestry that stretches its branches towards the glistening sun. Take a seat in the rocking chair and gaze at the view, or simply cozy up in one of the two beds that look even more inviting as the sunlight peeks through the windows. Your relaxing stay in Ohio Amish Country begins with us at the White Oak Inn!