Twice I’ve read the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder to our girls. We have very good memories of being snuggled together on the couch as went back in time to America’s pioneer days with Half-Pint as our guide. We’ve also watched many of the episodes from the TV series. They are quite different from the books but good all the same.
Unlike many museums we have visited that feature items that are reproductions from the time period in which the subject lived, The Laura Ingalls Wilder Historic Home and Museum contains the author’s very own possessions. We were delighted to see Pa’s fiddle, quilts Laura and Mary had made, photographs of the family, clothes sewn by the family, the Christmas clock, Laura’s Bible, and many more items we had come to know in her books. We spent a lot of time in the Museum and read through every bit of it! We also enjoyed learning more about the Wilder’s only child, Rose. Sketches by the Little House illustrator Garth Williams are also on display.
The home, which is just as Laura left it when she died, was built by Almanzo and Laura using materials from their land. It is very unique. Because we went during the off season, we went on an abbreviated tour. There is another home to see, one that Rose built for her parents, but it was closed for the winter.
The staff at the museum were very nice and patient in answering our many questions. The girls and I walked around the front of the home one last time before we left. It was a special stop for all of us as we felt like to finally got to meet someone with whom we had long been acquainted. We now have a goal to reread the books. This time we won’t have to imagine many of the items Laura described in her books. We can picture the real thing.
Laura Ingalls Wilder Historic Home and Museum: http://www.lauraingallswilderhome.com/index.html