Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Amish Developer Builds Career in Modern Home Construction

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Amish Developer Builds Career in Modern Home Construction

Article excerpt

LANCASTER, Pa. (AP) _ Power tools are a no-no at home for Amish housebuilder Amos M. Stolzfus. But that doesn't mean he can't make a buck using them.

"You do have to make allowances for some things," the only major Amish developer in Lancaster County said. "We do have to survive."

Stolzfus, never a fan of farmwork, chose to build modern homes infused with traditional Amish craftsmanship.

"We probably put a little more emphasis on the structural quality rather than the bells and whistles," Stolzfus said.

The builder has to strike a balance between competition in the construction industry and the tenets of his religion, which discourage modern conveniences.

AMS Enterprises Inc., formed in 1976, has an office with telephones and a fax machine, but Stolzfus keeps his own home high-tech free.

Stolzfus hired a driver to take him to construction sites. At home, he gets around using a horse and buggy.

In 1971, Stolzfus started building barns in Lancaster County, renowned as a center of Amish life, while his five younger brothers tended to the family chores. …

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