Living a Tradition

At Sabbathday Lake in Maine, the eight members of the only surviving Shaker community carry on the old ways

Smithsonian readers are avid travelers, either in reality or from the comfort of their armchairs, and over the years the magazine has taken them from Savannah to the Sargasso Sea, from Panama to Bangalore, from Reno to Warsaw. Now we're adding something extra.

Here on the Web, we've expanded our new magazine feature, Smithsonian Journeys, to offer a host of additional stories, essays, travel tips, photo galleries and much more. Already, we've taken you camel trekking in the Australian outback, to Great Britain's Blenheim Palace and to Belgium's Royal Greenhouses. This month Joyce and Richard Wolkomir's Smithsonian feature, "Living a Tradition," takes you on a journey to New England's Shaker villages. Here on the Web, we give you more: in a letter to our travel editor, affectionately known as Smitty, the Wolkomirs tell of their encounter with a ferocious dog on their way to the Hancock Shaker Village. Want to visit a Shaker village yourself? In Travel Tips, you'll find an easy-to-read map of all the villages visited by the Wolkomirs and informative links to the Websites of many of the Shaker museums and villages in the United States. Click on another of our Web stories and sample the sounds of Shaker hymns. There's a slide show of fabulous finds at the Hancock Shaker Village in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. We've also put together a collection of recipes from the cookbook of Sister Frances Carr, a Shaker at Sabbathday Lake. Check out our Smithsonian expert, Jeremy Adamson from the Smithsonian Museum of American Art's Renwick Gallery, whose essay about Shaker design will surprise you. And delight in a story from one of the country's foremost scholars on Shaker culture, June Sprigg, who weaves a charming tale about her first encounter with the Shaker sisters at Canterbury. We hope you'll find something here to intrigue you, and if you have a thought or two to pass along to us, please do. Write us a postcard or e-mail us at [email protected] and tell us what you think of this new feature.

In coming months we've got much more to offer as we prowl the ghost towns of the American West, take a very wet trip to the monstrous whirlpools of the North Atlantic and seek out the giant megaliths of the British Isles. So stay tuned travelers.

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