The Shakers, a Protestant religious denomination officially called The United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing, originated in Manchester, England in 1747 in the home of Jane and James Wardley. Protestantism refers to the forms of Christian faith and practice that originated in the 16th century Protestant Reformation. England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland The Shakers developed from the religious group called the Quakers which developed in the 17th century. Both groups believed that everybody could find God within him or herself, rather than through clergy or rituals, but the Shakers tended to be more emotional and demonstrative in their worship. Shakers also believed that their lives should be dedicated to pursuing perfection and continuously confessing their sins and attempting to stop sinning. 
The 17th century was fraught with religious turmoil due to constant fighting between Protestants and Catholics. Religious wars led many to believe that the Millennium was at hand, and spirit possession began manifesting itself in many new forms. The 18th century saw the largest number and most diverse of these possessions, including visions, prophecy, and trances. These movements became a part of the more general religious awakening that spread through most of continental Europe north of the Alps between the late 17th century and 1740s, affecting the British Isles and the American colonies as well. Half a century later, the United States and England saw an emergence of many radical religious groups who formed Utopian societies including the Oneida community, Millerites, Rappites and of course, the Shakers. The Oneida Community was a Utopian commune founded by John Humphrey Noyes in 1848 in Oneida New York. The Harmony Society was a Christian theosophy and pietist society founded in Iptingen, Germany, in 1785 
The Shakers focus on two moments as being the most influential in the origin of their movement. The first is 1706 with the coming of five “French prophets” to London, well recorded in historical sources as camisards from the Cévennes Mountains in the south of France. London ( ˈlʌndən is the capital and largest urban area in the United Kingdom. Camisards were French Protestants ( Huguenots) of the rugged and isolated Cevennes region of south-central France, who raised an insurrection against The Cévennes are a range of mountains in south-central France, covering parts of the départements ' of Gard, Lozère, Ardèche This article is about the country For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic France topics. The name “Camisards” was the term that French Protestant militants bestowed upon themselves when they waged a five-year insurrection against Louis XIV, who was trying to stamp out Protestantism in favor of Catholicism. Early years Birth and ancestry Louis XIV was born in the Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye on September 5 1638 and bore the Heir apparent The Camisards were defeated and forced to join the thousands of Huguenot exiles living in Protestant territories in France, England, and North America. The Huguenots were members of the Protestant Reformed Church of France (or French Calvinists) from the sixteenth to the eighteenth The five French Prophets must have been amidst these exiles. The second date that Shakers focus on is 1747, when Mother Ann Lee first made contact with James Wardley, a preacher who maintained a small group with the “possession by the spirit” reminiscent of the French prophets. This article is about Mother Ann Lee For the singer see Ann Lee (singer Mother Ann Lee ( February 29 1736 - September 8
The Shakers built 19 communal settlements that attracted some 200,000 converts over the next century. A commune is an Intentional community of people living together sharing common interests Property, possessions Resources, work and Income Strict believers in celibacy, Shakers maintained their numbers through conversion and adoption of orphans. Celibacy refers to the lack of participation in Sexual intercourse. Turnover was very high; the group reached maximum size of about 6,000 full members in 1840, but as of 2006 had only four members left. Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar.  Only a few of the original Shaker buildings are still in use today.
The Shakers of New England should not be confused with the religion of the Indian Shakers of the Pacific Northwest of North America. History See also History of New England New England's earliest inhabitants were Algonquian -speaking Native Americans including the The Indian Shaker Church is a Christian denomination founded in 1881 by Squaxin logger John Slocum in Washington. The Pacific Northwest is a region in the northwest of North America (the term refers to the land not the ocean
The name "Shakers," originally pejorative, was derived from the term "Shaking Quakers" and was applied as a mocking description of their rituals of trembling, shouting, dancing, shaking, singing, and glossolalia (speaking in strange and unknown languages). Words and phrases are pejorative if they imply disapproval or contempt Glossolalia is commonly called "speaking in tongues" For other uses of "speaking in tongues" see Speaking in Tongues (disambiguation. In 1774 Ann Lee pulled together nine of her followers from an English sect known as the Wardleys, founded by Jane and James Wardley, which she joined in 1758. This article is about Mother Ann Lee For the singer see Ann Lee (singer Mother Ann Lee ( February 29 1736 - September 8 They arrived on August 6, 1774 in New York City, and in 1776 the Shakers settled in Niskayuna, New York, where a unique communal life began to develop and thrive. Events 1538 - Bogotá, Colombia, is founded by Gonzalo Jiménez de Quesada. Year 1774 ( MDCCLXXIV) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a The City of New York Niskayuna is a Town in Schenectady County, New York, USA. The population was 20295 at the 2000 census A commune is an Intentional community of people living together sharing common interests Property, possessions Resources, work and Income Lee taught her followers that it is possible to attain perfect holiness. Like her predecessors the Wardleys, she taught that the demonstrations of shaking and trembling were caused by sin being purged from the body by the power of the Holy Spirit, purifying the worshipper. In mainstream Christianity, the Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost is one of the three entities of the Holy Trinity which make up the single substance Distinctively the followers of Mother Ann came to believe that she embodied all the perfections of God in female form.
(Note: The Shaker community north of Albany was called by Shakers "the Niskayuna community. " The township they were in was then officially called Watervliet, although they bordered Niskayuna, the adjacent township to the northwest in Schenectady County. The township of Watervliet is now the township of Colonie (since 1895), and the name Watervliet is now limited to only the incorporated City of Watervliet (1896). Colonie is a Town in Albany County, New York, United States (ˌkɒləˈniː Watervliet is a City in Albany County, New York, United States. This has led to some confusion, but the best method is to use the name the Shakers used for their community, Niskayuna. It is also fairly common to refer to the members there as Niskayuna Shakers. )
The village was divided into groups or "families" that were named for points on the compass rose. A village is a clustered human settlement or community, larger than a hamlet, but smaller than a Town or City. For Compass Airlines an Airline in the US using the Callsign "Compass Rose" See Compass Airlines A compass rose is a figure displaying the orientation Each house was divided so that men and women did everything separately. They used different staircases and doors, and sat on opposite sides of the room.
A spiritualistic revival in New Lebanon, some forty miles away, sent many penitents to Niskayuna, who accepted Mother Ann's teachings and organized in 1787 (before any formal organization in Niskayuna) the New Lebanon Society, the first Shaker Society, at New Lebanon (since 1861 called Mt. Spiritualism is a Religion founded in part on the writings of the Swedish mystic Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772 New Lebanon is a Town in Columbia County, New York, US, 24 miles (39 km southeast of Albany. Mount Lebanon Shaker Society, also known as New Lebanon Shaker Society, was a communal settlement of Shakers in New Lebanon. Lebanon), Columbia County, New York. The Society at Niskayuna organized immediately afterwards, and the New Lebanon Society formed a bishopric. The Niskayuna Shakers, as pacifists and non-jurors, had gotten into trouble during the American War of Independence. In this article the inhabitants of the thirteen colonies that supported the American Revolution are primarily referred to as "Americans" with occasional references to "Patriots"
Between 1781 and 1783 the Mother, with chosen elders, visited her followers in New York, Massachusetts and Connecticut. She died in Niskayuna, New York on September 8, 1784. Niskayuna is a Town in Schenectady County, New York, USA. The population was 20295 at the 2000 census Events 70 - Roman forces under Titus sack Jerusalem. 1264 - The Statute of Kalisz Year 1784 ( MDCCLXXXIV) was a Leap year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Leap year James Whittaker was head of the Believers for three years. On his death he was succeeded by Joseph Meacham (1742–1796), who had been a Baptist minister in Enfield, Connecticut, and had, second only to Mother Ann, the spiritual gift of revelation. Enfield is a town located in Hartford County, Connecticut, United States. Under his rule and that of Lucy Wright (1760–1821), who shared the headship with him during his lifetime and then for twenty-five years ruled alone, the organization of the Shakers and, particularly, a rigid communalism (religious communism), began. See also Communalism (South Asia. In many parts of the world communalism is a modern term that describes a broad range of Social movements Religious communism is a form of Communism centered on religious principles By 1793 property had been made a "consecrated whole" in the different communities, but a "noncommunal order" also had been established, in which sympathizers with the principles of the Believers lived in families. The Shakers never forbade marriage, but refused to recognize it as a Christian institution since the second coming in the person of Mother Ann, and considered it less perfect than the celibate state. NOTICE TO WOULD-BE ROMEOS **************
Shaker communities in this period were established in 1790 at Hancock, West Pittsfield, Massachusetts; in 1791 at Harvard, Massachusetts; in 1792 at East Canterbury, New Hampshire (or Shaker Village); and in 1793 at Shirley, Massachusetts; at Enfield, Connecticut (then also known as Shaker Station); at Enfield, New Hampshire (or "Chosen Vale"); at Tyringham, Massachusetts, where the Society was afterwards abandoned, its members joining the communities in Hancock and Enfield; at New Gloucester, Maine (since 1890: "Sabbathday Lake"); and at Alfred, Maine, where, more than anywhere else among the Shakers, spiritualistic healing of the sick was practiced. This article is about the town of Harvard Massachusetts Harvard University is located in the city of Cambridge Massachusetts. Canterbury is a town in Merrimack County, New Hampshire, United States. Canterbury Shaker Village, is a historic site and museum in Canterbury New Hampshire. Shirley is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. Enfield is a town located in Hartford County, Connecticut, United States. Enfield is a town in Grafton County, New Hampshire, United States. Tyringham is a town in Berkshire County, Massachusetts, United States. New Gloucester is a town in Cumberland County, Maine, in the United States. Alfred is a town in York County, Maine, in the United States. In Kentucky and Ohio, Shakerism entered after the Cane Ridge, Kentucky revival of 1800–1801, and in 1805–1807 Shaker societies were founded at South Union, Logan County, Kentucky, and Pleasant Hill, Kentucky, Mercer County, Kentucky. Cane Ridge, Kentucky, USA was the site in 1801 of a large Camp meeting which drew thousands of people and had a lasting influence as one of the landmark Revival in a Christian context generally refers to a specific period of spiritual renewal in the life of the Church Pleasant Hill Kentucky, USA, is the site of a Shaker religious community that was active from 1805 to 1910 Mercer County is a County located in the US state of Kentucky.
A prominent part in this revival had been taken by Richard McNemar, a Presbyterian, who had broken with his church because of his Arminian tendencies and had established the quasi-independent Turtle Creek Church. Presbyterianism is a family of Christian denominations within the Reformed branch of Protestant Western Christianity Arminianism is a school of soteriological thought within Protestant Christianity based on the theological ideas of the Dutch McNemar was won by Shaker missionaries in 1805, and many of his parishioners joined him to form the Union Village community in Turtlecreek Township, Warren County, Ohio, four miles west of Lebanon. Turtlecreek Township is one of the eleven townships of Warren County, Ohio, United States. For other places with the same name see Lebanon (disambiguation. McNemar was a favorite of Lucy Wright, who gave him the spiritual name Eleazer Riotht, which he changed to Eleazer Wright; he wrote The Kentucky Revival (Cincinnati, 1807), probably the earliest defense of Shakerism, and a poem, entitled A Concise Answer to the General Inquiry Who or What are the Shakers (1808).
In 1811 a community settled at Busro on the Wabash in Indiana; but it was soon abandoned and its members went to Ohio and to Kentucky. The State of Indiana ( was the 19th US state admitted into the union In Ohio later communities were formed at Watervliet, Montgomery and Greene counties, and at Whitewater, Butler and Hamilton counties. In New York, the communal property at Sodus Bay was sold in 1828 and the community removed to Groveland, or Sonyea; their land here was sold to the state and the few remaining members went to Niskayuna. A short-lived community at Canaan, was merged into the communities in Mount Lebanon (in New Lebanon) and Enfield, Connecticut. Canaan is a Town in Columbia County, New York, United States. New Lebanon is a Town in Columbia County, New York, US, 24 miles (39 km southeast of Albany. Enfield is a town located in Hartford County, Connecticut, United States.
The peak decreased rapidly, probably from 4,000 in 1887 to 1,000 in 1908, and there has been little effort made to plant new communities. The Mt. Lebanon Society in 1894 established a colony at Narcoossee, Florida; the attempt of the Union Village Society in 1898 to plant a settlement at White Oak, Georgia, was unsuccessful. Narcoossee is a small unincorporated community in eastern Osceola County, Florida, United States. White Oak is a small rural community in Camden County, southeast Georgia, USA some miles north of the Florida state line In 1910 the Union Village Society went into the hands of a receiver.
At various times, the Shakers had eighteen major communities in eight states and six smaller communities in Florida and Indiana. Florida ( is a state located in the southeastern region of the United States, bordering Alabama to the northwest and Georgia to the The State of Indiana ( was the 19th US state admitted into the union The city of Shaker Heights, Ohio, population 29,000, a suburb of Cleveland, was originally a Shaker settlement. Shaker Heights is a City in the US state of Ohio. As of the 2000 Census, the city population was 29405 and was the tenth-largest city in Cleveland is a City in the US state of Ohio and the County seat of Cuyahoga County, the most populous county in the state
The lands of the Niskayuna settlement were sold off in parcels, the last 741-acre plot was purchased by Albany County in 1929 to establish a nursing home. A large portion of this property later became the site of the Albany International Airport. The Ann Lee Home museum now consists of the 1848 Shaker Meeting House, several Shaker buildings, a large 1916 barn with some animals, a heritage herb garden and the Shaker Cemetery where the society founder, Ann Lee, and other early Shakers are buried.
Much of the Mt. Lebanon community is now a private boarding school, yet retains much of its original beauty. There is a small museum on the site. The Hancock Shaker Village just across the Massachusetts state line is extensive, focusing on lifeways of the Shakers and Shaker arts. The Enfield, New Hampshire site is now a Catholic convent.
Today there are but a handful of Shakers remaining, all living at Sabbathday Lake, Maine. New Gloucester is a town in Cumberland County, Maine, in the United States.
The Shakers did not believe in procreation so therefore had to adopt a child if they wanted one. Reproduction is the Biological process by which new individual Organisms are produced Another way they could expand their community's population was to allow converts into the Shaker society to live and function as one. When Shaker boys reached the age of twenty-one, they were given the choice to leave the Shaker religion and go their own separate way or to continue on as a Shaker. A religion is a set of Tenets and practices often centered upon specific Supernatural and moral claims about Reality, the Cosmos The Shakers lived in "families" sharing a large house with separate entrances for each family within the "family"; thus the families were exclusively male or female — the sexes were segregated into separate living areas. Family denotes a group of People affiliated by consanguinity affinity or co-residence An organism's sex is defined by the gametes it produces males produce male gametes (spermatozoa or Sperm) while females produce female gametes (ova or Egg cells; individual
The nature of the Shaker religion set men and women equal to one another in religious leadership, as celibacy left women free to participate fully in the religious system without having to be distracted by childbearing. All authority in the church was hierarchal, but at each level men and women shared equal responsibility in equal numbers. This is especially evident in the fact that women have served as supreme head of the Shaker society throughout its existence, and in the fact that God was perceived by the Shakers to express both male and female characteristics. However, outside of the church, Shakers strictly adhered to traditional gender roles. As their homes were segregated by sex, so were men and women’s work spheres. Women worked almost exclusively indoors cooking, sewing, cleaning and washing, whereas men worked in the fields or shops.  Shakers thus simultaneously elevated women’s status in society and reinforced the stereotypical vision of the weaker sex whose job lay in the home. Some have also argued that the very roots of celibacy are themselves misogynistic, in that men were abstaining from sex in order to dissociate themselves from woman’s original sin. 
A peculiar, intense kind of spirituality began to develop under this unique arrangement. A period of spiritual manifestations among the Believers began in 1837 and lasted through 1847. Children told of visits to cities in the spirit realm and brought messages to the community which they received from Mother Ann. In 1838 the gift of tongues was manifested and sacred places were set aside in each community, with names like Holy Mount; but in 1847 the spirits, after warning, left the Believers. The theology of the denomination is based on the idea of the dualism of God: the creation of man as male and female "in our image" showing the dual sexuality of the Creator; in Jesus, born of a woman, the son of a Jewish carpenter, were the male manifestation of Christ and the first Christian Church; and in Mother Ann, daughter of an English blacksmith, were the female manifestation of Christ and the second Christian Church — she was the Bride ready for the Bridegroom, and in her the promises of the Second Coming were fulfilled. Male (♂ refers to the sex of an organism or part of an organism which produces small mobile Gametes called spermatozoa. In Christianity, the Second Coming is the anticipated return of Jesus Christ from Heaven to earth an event that will fulfill aspects of Messianic Adam's sin was in sexual impurity; marriage is done away with in the body of the Believers in the Second Appearance, who must pattern after the Kingdom in which there is no marriage or giving in marriage. The four virtues are virgin purity; Christian communism; confession of sin, without which none can become Believers; and separation from the world. Christian Communism is a form of Religious communism centered around Christianity. The confession of one's Sins is a religious practice important to many faiths e Their insistence on the dual sexuality of God and their reverence for Mother Ann have made them advocates of sex equality. God is the principal or sole Deity in Religions and other belief systems that worship one deity. Their spiritual directors are elders and "eldresses", and their temporal guides are deacons and deaconesses in equal numbers. Deacon is a role in the Christian Church that is generally associated with service of some kind but which varies among theological and denominational traditions
The prescribed uniform costume with woman's neckerchief and cap, and the custom of men wearing their hair long on the neck and cut in a straight bang on the forehead, still persist; but the women wear different colors. The communism of the Believers was an economic success, and their cleanliness, honesty and frugality received the highest praise. They made leather in New York for several years, but in selling herbs and garden seeds, in making apple-sauce (at Shirley), in weaving linen (at Alfred), and in knitting underwear they did better work.
Shakers were known for a style of furniture, known as Shaker furniture. Shaker furniture is a distinctive style of Furniture developed by the United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearing (aka It was plain in style, durable, and functional. Shaker chairs were usually mass-produced since a great number of them were needed to seat all the Shakers in a community. A chair is a kind of Furniture for Sitting, consisting of a back and sometimes arm rests commonly for use by one person Around the time of the American Civil War, the Shakers at Mount Lebanon, NY, greatly increased their production and marketing of Shaker chairs. Causes of the war See also Origins of the American Civil War, Timeline of events leading to the American Civil War The coexistence of a slave-owning South They were so successful that several furniture companies produced their own versions of "Shaker" chairs. Because of the quality of their craftsmanship, original Shaker furniture is costly. Furniture is the Mass noun for the movable objects which may support the human body (seating furniture and beds, provide storage or hold objects on horizontal One Shaker chair, actually a tall stool, sold recently for just under US$100,000. The United States dollar ( sign: $; code: USD) is the unit of Currency of the United States; it has also been
Shakers worshipped in plain meetinghouses where they marched, sang songs, danced, twitched and shouted. Many outsiders who witnessed Shaker worship services considered them heretics and protested in front of their places of worship. Heresy is an introduced change to some system of belief especially a religion that conflicts with the previously established canon of that belief Mother Ann was arrested several times for disturbing the peace. Early Shaker worship services were unstructured, loud, chaotic and emotional. However, later on, Shakers developed precision dances and orderly rituals. The Shakers have also written thousands of religious songs.
The meeting-houses were painted white and unadorned, with shutters and carvings eschewed as worldly things. The Shakers believed in the value of hard work and kept comfortably busy. Each member learned a craft and did chores. Mother Ann said, "Labor to make the way of God your own; let it be your inheritance, your treasure, your occupation, your daily calling. "Heir" and "Heiress" redirect here For the men and women fragrances endorsed by Paris Hilton see Heiress (fragrance. Treasure (from Greek θησαυρος Thesaurus, meaning "a treasure of the chest" is a Cognate) is a concentration of riches often one "
Shaker beliefs have generated a unique culture and ways of life that have enriched the cultural history of the United States as well as subsequently inspired many modern fields. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the
One of the major attributes of the Shakers was to build. This combined with their dedication to hard work and perfection has resulted in a unique range of architecture, furniture and handicraft styles. They relied on their own skills and natural resources for all these as well as for providing for their family. Shakers designed their furniture with care, believing that making something well was in itself, "an act of prayer. " They never fashioned items with elaborate details or extra decorations, but only made things for their intended uses. The ladder-back chair was a popular piece of furniture. Shaker craftsmen made most things out of pine or other inexpensive woods and hence their furniture was light in color and weight. This article is about the tree For other uses of the term "pine" see Pine (disambiguation. Wood is hard fibrous lignified structural tissue produced as secondary Xylem in the stems of Woody plants notably trees but also shrubs Shaker interior spaces are characterized by an austerity and simplicity. For example, they had a continuous wooden device like a pelmet with hooks running all along the lintel level from which they hung the very light furniture pieces such as chairs when not in use. A pelmet is a framework placed above a window used to conceal curtain fixtures For lintel as a decorative element see Lintel (architecture For beam as load-bearing member see beam The simple, honest architecture of their homes, meeting houses, and barns have had a lasting influence on American architecture and design. The term architecture (from Greek αρχιτεκτονικήarchitektoniki) can be used to mean a process a profession or documentation There is a collection of furniture and utensils at Hancock Shaker Village (outside Pittsfield, Massachusetts) that is famous for its elegance and practicality. Hancock Shaker Village is a National Historic Landmark District in Hancock, Massachusetts that was established by Shakers in 1790
Shakers won respect and admiration for their productive farms and orderly communities. A farm is an area of land including various structures devoted primarily to the practice of producing and managing food ( Produce, Grains, or Livestock Their industry brought about many inventions like the screw propeller, Babbitt metal, the rotary harrow, the circular saw, the clothespin, the flat broom and the wheel-driven washing machine. An invention is a new form composition of matter device or Process. A propeller is essentially a type of fan which transmits power by converting Rotational motion into Thrust for propulsion of a vehicle such as an Babbitt metal, also called White metal, is an Alloy used to provide the bearing surface in a Plain bearing. A rotary tiller, also known as a rototiller, rotavator, rotary hoe, power tiller, or rotary plough (in US plow is a motorised The circular saw is a Metal disc or Blade with Saw Teeth on the edge as well as the Machine that causes the disk to They were once the largest producers of medicinal herbs in the United States, and pioneers in the sale of seeds in paper packets. Shaker dances and songs are a main, but largely unrecognized, aspect of folk art. Dance (from French danser, perhaps from Frankish) is an Art form that generally refers to movement of the body usually rhythmic A song is a Musical composition. Songs contain vocal parts that are performed 'sung' and generally feature Words ( Lyrics) commonly followed Folk art describes a wide range of objects that reflect the Craft traditions and traditional social values of various social groups
Shaker ways influenced many people to write books and adopt ways of life from Shakers. A Book is a set or collection of written printed illustrated or blank sheets made of Paper, Parchment, or other material usually fastened together By the middle of the twentieth century, as the Shaker communities themselves were disappearing, some American collectors whose visual tastes were formed by the stark aspects of the modernist movement found themselves drawn to the spare artifacts of Shaker culture, in which "form follows function" was also clearly expressed. Modernism describes an array of Cultural movements rooted in the changes in Western society in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century Kaare Klint, an architect and famous furniture designer, used styles from Shaker furniture in his work. Kaare Klint (Born December 15, 1888 in Copenhagen &mdash March 28, 1954) was a Danish Architect and An architect is a licensed individual who leads a design team in the Planning and Design of buildings and participates in oversight of Building Construction Another example is Doris Humphrey, an innovator in technique, choreography, and theory of dance movement. Doris Batcheller Humphrey (October 17 1895 &ndash December 29 1958 was a Dancer of the early twentieth century See also, Choreography (literally "dance-writing" from the Greek words "χορεία" (circular dance see chorea) and "γραφή" She made a full theatrical art with her dance entitled Dance of The Chosen Ones in which the nature of the Shakers' religious fervor was depicted.
The Shakers considered music to be an essential component of the religious experience. The Shakers composed thousands of songs, and also created many dances; both were an important part of the Shaker worship services. In Shaker society, a spiritual "gift" could also be a musical revelation, and they considered it to be important to record musical inspirations as they occurred. Scribes, many of whom had no formal musical training, used a form of music notation for this purpose: it used letters of the alphabet, often not positioned on a staff, along with a simple notation of conventional rhythmic values. This method has a curious, and coincidental, similarity to some ancient Greek music notation.
Many of the lyrics to Shaker tunes consist of syllables and words from unknown tongues, the musical equivalent of glossolalia. Glossolalia is commonly called "speaking in tongues" For other uses of "speaking in tongues" see Speaking in Tongues (disambiguation. It has been surmised that many of them were imitated from the sounds of Native American languages, as well as from the songs of African slaves, especially in the southernmost of the Shaker communities, but in fact the melodic material is derived from European scales and modes.
Most early Shaker music is monodic, that is to say, composed of a single melodic line with no harmonization. The tunes and scales recall the folksongs of the British Isles, but since the music was written down and carefully preserved, it is "art" music of a special kind rather than folklore. Many melodies are of extraordinary grace and beauty, and the Shaker song repertoire, though still relatively little known, is an important part of the American cultural heritage and of world religious music in general.
Several hymnbooks with more conventional four-part harmonization were published by the Shakers in the late nineteenth century. These works are less strikingly original than the earlier, monodic repertoire.
The surviving Shakers sing songs drawn from both the earlier repertoire and the four part songbooks. They perform all of these unaccompanied, in single-line unison singing. The many recent, harmonized arrangements of older Shaker songs for choirs and instrumental groups mark a departure from traditional Shaker practice.
The most famous Shaker song is Simple Gifts, which Aaron Copland used as a theme for variations in Appalachian Spring. "Simple Gifts" is an 1848 Shaker song by Elder Joseph Brackett. Aaron Copland (November 14 1900 &ndash December 2 1990 was an American Composer of concert and film music as well as an accomplished Pianist. Appalachian Spring is a Ballet score by Aaron Copland that premiered on 1944 and achieved widespread popularity as an Orchestral Suite The tune was composed by Elder Joseph Brackett and originated in the Shaker community at Alfred, Maine in 1848. Alfred is a town in York County, Maine, in the United States. Many contemporary Christian denominations incorporate this tune into hymnals, under various names, including "Lord of the Dance," adapted in 1963 by English poet and songwriter Sydney Carter. A hymn is a type of Song, usually religious specifically written for the purpose of praise adoration or Prayer, and typically addressed to a deity/deities Lord of the Dance is a Hymn with words written by Sydney Carter in 1963. Sydney Bertram Carter ( 6 May 1915 – 13 March 2004) was an English Poet, Songwriter, folk Musician
Some scholars, such as Daniel W. Patterson and Roger L. Hall, have compiled books of these songs, and groups have been formed to sing the songs and perform the dances. There are recordings available of Shaker songs, both documentation of singing by the Shakers themselves, as well as songs recorded by other groups (see external links). Two widely distributed commercial recordings by The Boston Camerata, "Simple Gifts" (1995) and "The Golden Harvest" (2000), were recorded at the Shaker community of Sabbathday Lake, Maine, with active cooperation from the surviving Shakers, whose singing can be heard at several points on both recordings.
Membership in the Shakers dwindled in the late 1800s for several reasons. People were attracted to cities and away from the farms. Shaker products could not compete with mass-produced products that became available at a much lower cost. Shakers could not have children, and although they did adopt up until the states gained control of adoption homes, this was not a major source of new members. Some Shaker settlements, such as Pleasant Hill community in Kentucky, and Canterbury, New Hampshire, the latter of which died with its last member, Ethel Hudson, in September 1992, have become museums. Pleasant Hill Kentucky, USA, is the site of a Shaker religious community that was active from 1805 to 1910 Canterbury is a town in Merrimack County, New Hampshire, United States. A museum is a "permanent institution in the service of society and of its development open to the public which acquires conserves researches communicates and exhibits the
Believers have continually looked at the story of Ann Lee as a cornerstone of the theological architecture that has distinguished their church from other American religious groups. Shaker theology, its manifestation in material artifacts such as furniture and oval boxes, and the Ann Lee story have continually drawn the attention of outsiders either fascinated or repulsed by them. The Shaker practices of Brandon Handelman have also become the standard for the modern day Shaker.
Although there were six thousand believers at the peak of the Shaker movement, there were only twelve Shakers left by 1920. In the United States there is one remaining active Shaker community, at Sabbathday Lake, Maine, which as of 2006 has four members. New Gloucester is a town in Cumberland County, Maine, in the United States. Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. The Sabbathday Lake community still accepts new recruits, as it has since its founding. Shakers are no longer allowed to adopt orphan children after new laws were passed in 1960 denying control of adoption to religious groups, but adults who wish to embrace Shaker life are welcome. This community, founded in 1783, was one of the smaller and more isolated Shaker communities during the sect's heyday. They farm and practice a variety of handicrafts; a Shaker Museum, and Sunday services are open to visitors. Now Mother Ann Day is celebrated on the first Sunday of August. The people sing and dance and a Mother Ann cake is presented. There is a legend that one of Mother Ann's predictions states that there will be a revival when there are only five Shakers left. However, there is no evidence to suggest Mother Ann stated this. The daily schedule of a Shaker in Sabbathday Lake Village is as follows:
To preserve their legacy as well as their idyllic, lakeside property at Sabbathday Lake, Maine, the Shakers announced in October 2005 that they had entered into a trust with the state of Maine and several conservation groups. New Gloucester is a town in Cumberland County, Maine, in the United States. The State of Maine ( is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States of America, bordering the Atlantic Ocean Under the agreement, the Shakers will sell conservation easements to the trust, allowing the village to ward off development and continue operating as long as there are Shakers to live there.
The agreement does not specify whether the property will become a park, museum or other public space should the Shakers die out. That decision would be made by a nonprofit corporation—the United Society of Shakers, Sabbathday Lake Inc. —whose board members are largely non-Shakers. The $3. 7 million conservation plan relies on grants, donations and public funds.
A number of contemporary and modern artists have drawn inspiration from the Shakers' history and practice.
Shaker lifestyle and tradition is celebrated in Arlene Hutton's play "As It Is in Heaven," which is a re-creation of a decisive time in the history of the Shakers. The play is written by Arlene Hutton, the pen name of actor/director Beth Lincks. Born in Louisiana and raised in Florida, Lincks was inspired to write the play after visiting the Pleasant Hills Shaker village in Harrodsburg, Kentucky, a restored community that the Shakers occupied for more than a century, before abandoning it in 1927 because of the inability of the sect to attract new converts.
In 2004 the Finnish choreographer Tero Saarinen and Boston Camerata music director Joel Cohen created a live performance work with dance and music entitled "Borrowed Light. Joel Cohen may refer to Joel Cohen (musician (b 1942 American musician specializing in early music repertoires Joel Cohen (writer " While all the music is Shaker song performed in a largely tradition manner, the dance intermingles only certain elements of Shaker practice and belief with Saarinen's original choreographic ideas, and with distinctive costumes and lighting. "Borrowed Light" has been given almost forty performances since 2004 in seven countries, most recently (early 2008) in Australia and New Zealand.