February 7, 2011

Happy Birthday, Laura Ingalls Wilder

She lived in a little house in Wisconsin, then in little houses in Kansas, Minnesota, and Iowa. She ended up in the Dakota Territory—but you better believe she still lived in a little house! 

Born Laura Ingalls in 1867, she married Almanzo Wilder and lived in the Dakotas, Florida, and Missouri. At times as a married woman she lived in a ramshackle, windowless log cabin—but eventually the hard-working couple managed to build and live in a 10-room farmhouse with outbuildings.

Wilder had lived a pioneering, farming, rural life as a child and as an adult, and later in life, inspired by her daughter's writing career, she began to write about her own and others' experiences in a series of children's books: Little House in the Big Woods, Little House on the Prairie, and six other books. Wilder was 64 years old when her first book was published.

Wilder's daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, wrote adult novels—and the two most successful were written about many of the same adventures in her mother's Little House series. Both women were able to achieve a certain amount of fame and fortune for their writings, although these days Wilder is far more famous than is Lane.

Apparently there is a big question mark about how much of the Little House books Laura Ingalls Wilder actually wrote, and how much was Rose Wilder Lane's work. Probably Wilder did pretty much all the writing and Lane heavily edited. At any rate, the mother-and-daughter team succeeded, however they divided up the work!

Explore the World of Laura Ingalls Wilder.
  • Here is a website with everything from book covers and family tree to maps and fiddle music.

  • Here are some coloring pages and quizzes. 

  • Here are some printable templates to color and cut out and create a pioneer town. 

  • Here are some recipes for foods in the Little House series. 

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