Saturday, May 01, 2010
Little House on the Prairie
So when I looked up Little House on the Prairie on the internet on a whim and realized it was not that far away (in southeastern Kansas), I became excited and started planning a trip. Of course I wanted to visit all of the sites, and it quickly turned into a month long exodus that was exciting to me, but impractical for our family for a number of reasons. But the Little House on the Prairie site was so near... and I had a friend who lived even closer than me that I could visit as well! So after a lovely visit with my dear friend. (Photos eventually I hope!) we headed home with the detour thru Kansas. (I had originally planned to head to the cabin first before going to my friends' but had such a late start that day that it wasn't feasible. It turned out to be a blessing too, since tornados touched down in that area that day and we would have been possibly caught in that weather!)
So apparently you can look up the Ingalls family in the 1870 census in Missouri. I did, because I love love love looking at censuses. Fascinating glimpses into another world. Yes, if you look at the image, you might notice that Laura is only 3. She simplified all the family moves in her book series. Her memories from the first book are actually from when they moved back to Wisconsin after leaving Kansas. (And they actually went to Kansas from Missouri). Baby Carrie was actually born in Kansas, not in Wisconsin. (Which explains why she seems to stay a baby forever!)
It was a fun place to stop and see. We got to discuss outhouses, which are not mentioned in the series, but something that came to mind while visiting and realizing the cabin was missing that important room. We discussed the map of the family travels, and where Kansas is in relation to Texas. The boys were thrilled to pet some goats on the farm next to the site, and Munchkin was happy to run around free after being in the car. All in all, it encouraged my desire for literary travels and we may choose to go to the Fiddle festival near their Wisconsin home one of these years. How fun would that be for the boys to participate in? If Munchkin's hair doesn't stay red, and turns brown, she could enter the Laura look alike contest too!