Jamesport, Missouri

Visiting Jamesport, Missouri

Small, quaint, horse and buggy transportation, antique shops, farms, wood furniture.  These are some of the words that come to mind when you think of Jamesport, Missouri.  We spent an afternoon there exploring the various shops on Main Street and eating at a rustic cafe for lunch.  We weren’t quite sure what to expect, but we had heard good things about it.  It ended up being time well spent.

Why Jamesport?

If you live in the Kansas City, Missouri metropolitan area or if you are on a road trip, visiting Jamesport can make for a unique afternoon adventure.  It is about an hour and twenty minutes north east of downtown Kansas City.  The small town has a population of only about 500 people.  It is particularly famous for having the largest Amish community in the state of Missouri.

Who are the Amish?

The Amish are a group of Anabaptist Christians who are known for living simply and dressing plainly.  They have been slow to adopt modern conveniences because of religious beliefs connected to statements in the Bible.  For this reason you will see the Amish driving horse-drawn buggies around town.  The women wear dresses with muted color and bonnets while the men wear solid colored shirts, broad-brimmed hats and grow beards, but shave their mustaches.  They are a people that promote pacifism, self-reliance, and the importance of community.  For more details into their beliefs and customs, see Wikipedia’s article here.

What to do in Jamesport?

Antique shops

We only had a few hours of time to explore the town.  Our kids wanted to check out the antique shops.  There are several all within walking distance of each other.  If you like rummaging through antiques, Jamesport has an excellent selection.  Our son, Ethan, especially liked rummaging through the collection of imitation weapons. I told him they probably wouldn’t have anything like that since the Amish are a peaceful people.  Ha ha! I had to eat my words on that. The Amish are peaceful, but the antique shops carried plenty of non-Amish wares. Can you tell what sword he found? If you like The Legend of Zelda, you might recognize it! Ethan was in heaven and I was laughing my head off.

Keep in mind, the antique shops all began closing at 3:00! We barely had time to get through them. So maybe make sure and hit the shops you want before you grab a late lunch.  


We ate lunch at Gingerich Dutch Pantry (website here).  It had a hometown feel with a simple buffet option for lunch.  We all chose this option.  That day there were choices like fried chicken, mashed potatoes, jello, a salad bar, and ice cream to name a few.  The food was good and it was fun to be seated at log tables and chairs.  The price was very reasonable as well at about $11 for the buffet.

Home Decor

After lunch, we walked across the street to a candle making shop called Farmhouse Collection (website here).  It was such a fun store!  There were thousands of candles on shelves throughout the store.  You could smell all the different kinds and even purchase individual wax melts.  We had fun opening up the different jars and deciding which ones were our favorites.  The candle making is done on site and depending what time you are there, you can even see them being poured.


After we finished exploring main street, we wanted to check out a couple of the furniture shops.  We had heard you could buy some high quality wood furniture there.  Well, that is true!  We were looking for barstools in particular.  There were dining sets, bedroom sets, patio furniture and other home decor.  The stores smelled liked fresh wood and I loved running my fingers along the smooth tables.  However, with high quality, often comes high price.  And that was definitely the case here.  It was much more than we wanted to spend.  So we just looked 🙂  

Final Thoughts

Jamesport was smaller than I was expecting.  I was also thinking that because it has such a large Amish community that there wouldn’t be electricity in the stores and that we wouldn’t be able to drive our cars through the town.  That is NOT TRUE.  There was electricity in the businesses we entered.  We drove right into town.  It didn’t feel nearly as isolated and “back-in-time” as I thought it was going to.  

We did see buggies.  We did see women in bonnets and men with beards.  And we talked a lot with our kids about the Amish way of life (from our limited understanding). 

Our short experience in Jamesport gave us a great opportunity to talk with our family about religion, choices we make, and showing respect for others and the choices they make.  That was probably the most important part of the day.

Jamesport, Missouri official website

For a map and detailed list of things to do in Jamesport, click here (the official website).  

You can take tours, but we didn’t plan that well enough in advance 🙂

Have you ever been to Jamesport?  What would you recommend?

Happy adventuring!

~ Rachel

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