Community self-sufficiency was an ideal that both defined and informed the Shaker experience in America. During the nineteenth century the Shakers at Sabbathday Lake Colony in New Gloucester, Maine—today the last remaining Shaker Colony in the nation— developed a sophisticated economic system that combined agricultural innovation, a far-reaching market-based trade in seeds, herbs, and medicinals, mill-based and home manufacturers, and “fancy goods” to supply the developing tourist sector. They practiced both selective cloture and a profound degree of market savvy as they confronted the maturing market economy. Mark B. Lapping is Professor of Public Policy at the Muskie School of Public Service, University of Southern Maine, in Portland. He is author of several books and many articles and is currently editing for re-publication Clarence Day's classic History of Agriculture in Maine.
Lapping, Mark B.. "Sufficient Unto Themselves: Life and Economy Among the Shakers in Nineteenth-Century Rural Maine." Maine History 40, 2 (2001): 86-112. https://digitalcommons.library.umaine.edu/mainehistoryjournal/vol40/iss2/2