The Doors at Canterbury Shaker Village

Doors are symbolic of opportunity, new life and passing from one state to another. But what about the doors that welcome us home everyday? It seems to me these passages represent a return to shelter and comfort, a return to the familiar.

During a recent trip to Canterbury Shaker Village in New Hampshire I couldn’t help but wonder over the building entrances. Since the late 18th century these entries have ushered residents and visitors into meeting halls, workshops, dinning rooms and living quarters. What stories they could tell! Each door must have represented something different to every person who crossed the threshold.

Canterbury Shaker Village is located in Canterbury, New Hampshire. Built in 1792, it was one of 19 Shaker communities in the United States. The last Shaker resident, Ethel Hudson, died in 1992. Today Canterbury Shaker Village is a non-profit museum tasked with preserving the heritage of the Shakers who called the area home for 200 years. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1993. If you want to see the Canterbury Shaker Village doors in person you can tour the site May through October and for special winter holiday events. Learn more by visiting




17 Responses to The Doors at Canterbury Shaker Village

  1. Tammy Morris says:

    I loved the pictures of the doors. They take your mind back to a simpler time! Thanks for sharing pictures that should remind all of us to slow down and to possibly evaluate our priorities.

  2. Allen, I loved the door Pictures! I found the Shakers to be a very interesting Sect, just like the Amana Colonies in Iowa, which still practices their Faith, though not as a communal effort.

    I love your Garden Home Retreat!, as well as your landscaping designs! I love everything you do!

  3. kay weiss says:

    I wanted to thank you for all the hard work you put into this site..I so enjoy EVERY pic and use some of them in my own decorating…..I call these little “happies” because a smile comes across my face when I look on your pages..there is so much to take in and I am NEVER bored…please continue at what you are doing…sooooo many people are blessed by it….Thanks Allen….a greatful friend…kay

  4. Susan says:

    I was fortunate in that I lived right down the road from the Canterbury Shaker Village, and went there many times. It still truly amazes me how many inventions are attributed to the Shakers.
    The Shaker Village in Enfield, NH is also a wonderful visit.

  5. carolyn says:

    read this on your email you sent last week. my daughters happen to be going from maine to vermont and were going right by the shaker village. so i told them about it and they stopped there…today. what a great find for them!

  6. Steve Adams says:

    Allen I photographed there in late 1980s after a a lot snow, in the morning. I have shots of a sister in the snow i did this job for a magazine and still have some film form the day. I just email them to the people there yesterday. The sister’s did not want shots of them so 1 sister went outside. email me some more shots i will put 1 on there Facebook website

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