The Path of a Pioneer Girl

When I was in elementary school… and middle school… and high school… and even now… I was, and am, a huge fan of Laura Ingalls Wilder.  I have all of her books.  I also have all of the books about her daughter, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.  Like I said, I was and am a huge fan.

As I grew older, I expanded my collection of “Little House” books to include books of nonfiction as well.  Today, I am thinking about one particular book: The Little House Guidebook.  I was fascinated with this book.  This book described each of the places that Laura Ingalls Wilder had written about in her books.  Accompanying each listed place was information about it, including information for people who wanted to visit those sites today.  I wanted to visit those sites so badly.  My mom and grandma and I made a plan that someday we would take a trip, just the three of us, and visit all of those places.  We would use this book as our guide and follow (more or less and in a modern way) the path that Laura had taken with her parents and sisters and then her husband and daughter.

We never went on this trip.  Like everyone else, our lives were (and still are) crazy busy, and we never found the time or opportunity to go on this trip.  Still, I hold on to this childhood hope that one day I will be able to visit all of these places.  The details will have to change some (my grandma passed away several months ago), so the trip won’t be like we originally hoped it would, but my mom and I could still go.  (I doubt my dad or brother has any great interest in the home sites of Laura Ingalls Wilder…)

So, today, my wishful travel is that of a pioneer girl.  I guess you could say that I have always loved history.  I mean, my favorite books as a child were historical fiction.  I still love history, and I have visited so many places that have allowed me to see the memories that history has left us.  Someday, I hope I get to visit what was possibly the very first historical adventure on which I wanted to go… following Laura Ingalls Wilder’s path.

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2 Responses to The Path of a Pioneer Girl

  1. Nicki says:

    I didn’t know you were a Little House fan too. I have all the books, including the additional series that were created on Laura’s daughter, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. For many years I read a chapter from a Little House book every night (I went through all of them several times). I made Mom and Dad swing over the LIW sites if we were going to be anywhere near them. I’ve been to Mansfield, Missouri and De Smet, South Dakota. A woman just published a book she wrote about her experiences traveling to the sites and looking for “the real Laura.” It is called The Wilder Life and is by Wendy McClure. When I have time to get it from the library and read it, I will.

  2. PHIT says:

    I think that sounds like a great trip! You should start planning it out now, which from the sounds of it you probably already do. Historical fiction was and is always my first pick when looking for a good book to read. However, I do make exceptions for some scientific novels, such as Twilight. =)

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