The Life Of Laura Ingalls Wilder

Information relating to Laura Ingall's Wilder, her life, her family, the Little House Books and places to visit that reinact her life.

Laura Ingalls Wilder was born on February 7, 1867, in a log cabin in a small cabin in the big woods of Pepin, Wisconsin. Laura's parents were Charles and Caroline Ingalls. In Laura's books their referred to as ma and pa. Laura had three siblings, Mary who was two years older than Laura and was also born in the big woods. Carrie who

was born in Kansas on August 3, 1870 and Grace who was born on May 23, 1877. There was also a brother Charles Fredrick Ingalls , who Laura didn't mention in any of her books because he died when he was only nine months old.

Laura was a frontier girl who spent her childhood traveling west in a covered wagon. The places that the Ingall family lived was the indian territory which was in Kansas, Walnut grove located in Minnesota, and lastly the Dakota


Laura's pa decided to leave the big woods in pursuit of land that the United States govenment was giving away based on the Homestead act. According to this act the only way a person could keep the land was if they produced a crop

on it for so many years, this wasn't always easy because the land was in rough shape. The Ingall family first went to the indian territory where they settled, but had to leave because the government decided to give the land back to the


In the year 1874 the Ingall family moved to Walnut Grove located in Minnesota. They lived close to Plum Creek. This is the place that Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote about in her book On The Banks Of Plum Creek. In this book she

tells of her pioneer adventures in Plum Creek and of her troubles with Nellie Olson, a girl in who lived in town.

In the year 1879 the Ingall family moved to South Dakota. In this same year Mary became ill, she sufferred a stroke during this illness which caused her to go blind. After Mary became blind, Laura became her eyes describing what she saw around her.

Two months short of her sixteenth birthday Laura Ingalls became a teacher. She taught school in a cold, drafty, abandoned claim shanty. Some of ther fives students were younger than she was. Laura teached for three years. During this time she also met Almanzo Wilder. Laura and Almanzo were married on August 25, 1885. After Laura

and Almanzo were married, Laura quit teaching. Laura and Almanzo got their own place on the Homestead Act, they farmed and had an apple orchard.

Laura and Almanzo had two children. Rose Wilder was born on December 5, 1886. In 1889 they had a son that did not live.

Almanzo suddenly catches diphtheira, the illness leaves him crippled for life. Then the farmhouse that Laura and Almanzo lived in accidently starts on fire. After this Laura and Almanzo decided that Almanzo would feel better in a warmer climate, so they move to Florida. Laura eventually gets sick of the heat in florida so they move to De Smet, South Dakota. They then decided to move to Mansfield, Missouri, which they lived until their deaths.

Rose grew up listening to the stories that Laura told her about her pioneer life. Rose being a successful author herself persuaded her mother, Laura, to write down her stories. So in 1930, Laura wrote her autobiography, Pioneer Girl,

she was unable to find a publisher. So Laura rewrote some parts of the book, which ended up being a series of books know as the Little House books. Laura kept writing books because children loved her books so much that they kept writing her begging for more Little House books. The books that Laura wrote were the Little House In

The Big Woods, Little House On The Praire, On The Banks Of Plum Creek, By The Shores of Silver Lake, Little Town On The Praire and These Happy Golden Years. She wrote all of these books in pencil on yellow tablets. These books made Laura Ingalls Wilder famous with children and adults everywhere.

After Laura's death, while cleaning out her bedroom dresser there was another manuscript found called The First Four Years. The book is about Laura and Almanzos first four years of marriage and the struggles they had farming.

It is suspected that Laura started writing the book but after Almanzo's death, she decided to put it away and not publish it. After her death her daughter Rose, had the book published.

After reading Laura Ingalls Wilder's books, people want to go and visit the places that Laura wrote about in her books. Some places that Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote about in her books have been preserved for people to visit.

The Gordon family who now lives on the land where Laura's family lived on at Plum Creek, Minnesota. The Gordon family lets people come in to see the dugout where the Ingalls family lived. In town there's a museum which has a

collection of the Ingall's belongings. The Nelson's home is also available to tour.

In Pepin, Wisconsin , there's a replica cabin standing on the Ingall's former property. There's also the Pepin Historical museum to visit.

In South Dakota there's the original surveyor's house that Laura's pa built back in 1887.

In Mansfield, Missouri, there's Laura and Almanzo's home Rocky Ridge to tour. It stands just as Laura left it. A museum is next to the house which has a lot of Laura's belongings in it such as pa's fiddle, ma's sewing machine and

Laura's tablets that she wrote her books on are enclosed behind glass. Laura, Almanzo and Rose are buried in the Mansfield cemetary.

Laura Ingalls Wilder was the last of her family to die, she died on February 10, 1957 at her home. She died in her sleep three days after she turned ninety years old. Charles Ingalls died in 1902, Caroline Ingalls in 1924, Grace in

1941, Carrie in 1946 and Almanzo on October 23, 1949.

In 1954 Laura Ingalls Wilder, was the recipient of the Laura Ingalls Wilder award given by the American Library Association. This award is given every three years to an author or illustrator who has made a substantial and

everlasting contribution to literature for children.

Seventeen years after Laura Ingalls Wilder's death, Michael Landon in 1974 started a series on television called Little House On The Prairie. The series is still viewed on television today with reruns. The show is based on the books by

Laura Ingalls Wilder. The show is still enjoyed by old viewers of the past and from new generations viewing the show today.

Laura Ingalls Wilder's life lives on through her Little House series of books, which today is enjoyed by the young, as well as, the young at heart or anyone wanting to learn what pioneer life was like.

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