A Geography of the Hutterites in North America


A Geography of the Hutterites in North America

Simon M. Evans

346 pages
18 photographs, 2 illustrations, 27 maps, 3 graphs, 15 tables, index


October 2021


$65.00 Add to Cart
eBook (EPUB)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

October 2021


$65.00 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

October 2021


$65.00 Add to Cart

About the Book

A Geography of the Hutterites in North America explores the geographical diffusion of the Hutterite colonies from the “bridgehead” of Dakota Territory in 1874 to the present distribution across North America. Looking further than just maps of location, this book analyzes the relationship between parent and daughter colonies as the Hutterite population continues to grow and examines the role of cultural and demographic forces in determining the diffusion process. Throughout this geographical analysis, Simon M. Evans pays due attention to the Hutterites’ contribution to the cultural landscape of the Canadian Prairies and the American Great Plains, as well as the interactions that the Hutterites have with the land, including their agricultural success.

With over forty years of research and personal interactions with more than a hundred Hutterite colonies, Evans offers a unique insight into the significant role that the Hutterites have in North America, both currently and historically. This study goes beyond the history, life, and culture of this communal brotherhood to present a new geographical analysis that reports on current and ongoing research within the field. The first narrative to be published regarding Hutterites in nearly a decade, A Geography of the Hutterites in North America is a valuable resource for scholars and students alike.

Author Bio

Simon M. Evans (1937–2019) was a professor of geography at Memorial University of Newfoundland and a project historian with Parks Canada. He is the author of The Bar U and Canadian Ranching History and Prince Charming Goes West: The Story of the E.P. Ranch and coeditor of Cowboys, Ranchers, and the Cattle Business: Cross-Border Perspectives on Ranching History.


"A Geography of Hutterites in North America makes a valuable contribution to our understanding of this distinctive ethnoreligious group and its impact on the Midwest and Great Plains. It does so by moving beyond past studies, many of which have focused on religious beliefs and practices, to focus on the geography of Hutterite settlements."—Devin C. Manzullo-Thomas, Middle West Review

"Evans provides a big-picture view of Hutterite interaction with their geography while differentiating between and within the four Leut. The emerging image is of a multifaceted group whose strength lies in their faith tradition and who are both open to innovation and wedded to the land."—Eva Holder, Religious Studies Review

“An outstanding work of scholarship. Simon Evans combines meticulous archival research with extensive field inquiry to create a superb geographical analysis of the Hutterite communities in North America. Unrivaled in scope and detail, it promises to become the definitive work on the historical geography of the Hutterites in North America.”—John C. Lehr, senior scholar in the Department of Geography at the University of Winnipeg

“A thoughtful, absorbing, original, and gracefully written study based on decades of research. . . . This is an important book that will have a central place in prairie scholarship. Readers will learn how the Hutterites have helped shape the history of the West.”—Sarah Carter, professor of history in the Department of History and Classics at the University of Alberta

“This well-written, in-depth summary of the Hutterites’ past and present in North America is based on Simon Evans’s half-century of interest in this fascinating German-speaking religious brotherhood. Helpful maps, charts, and images complement his impressive documentary and field research.”—Donald B. Smith, professor emeritus of history at the University of Calgary

Table of Contents

List of Figures
Lists of Tables
1. Forging a Home on the Frontier: Dakota Territory, 1874–1918
2. The Exodus: Crossing into Canada, 1918–1920
3. Consolidation and Acceptance: Surviving the Great Depression, 1920–1941
4. “Enemy Aliens”: World War II and Its Aftermath, 1941–1972
5. Some Freedom of Locational Choice: Varied Reactions, 1973–1981
6. Unfettered Diffusion: Expanding Settlement Patterns, 1981–2015
7. The Driving Force behind Diffusion: Hutterite Demography
8. Bones of Contention: Factors Shaping Diffusion
9. The Legacy of Diffusion: Cultural Landscapes
10. Making a Living: Diversified Agriculture
11. Beating the Squeeze: Adaptive Strategies
12. Coda: Musings on the Future

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