Saturday, February 7, 2009

Happy Birthday, Laura Ingalls Wilder!

Laura Ingalls Wilder, author of the Little house books, was born February 7, 1867 in Wisconsin. Mrs. Wilder died February 10, 1957 in Missouri.

On her 142nd birthday, remember her by reading one of her books, even if it's only a chapter. This time of year, I particularly enjoy rereading The Long Winter.

Her books are:
Little House in the Big Woods (1932)
Farmer Boy (1933)
Little House on the Prairie (1935)
On the Banks of Plum Creek (1937)
By the Shores of Silver Lake (1939)
The Long Winter (1940)
Little Town on the Prairie (1941)
These Happy Golden Years (1943)
The First Four Years (1971)

There are other books: On the Way Home (1962), a diary that chronicles the Wilder's move to Missouri; and West From Home (1974) which consists of Laura's letters to Almanzo when she went to visit their daughter Rose in California.

Laura Ingalls Wilder didn't write about all her growing up years. She left out the years the family lived in the small town of Burr Oak. The missing years fit between On the Banks of Plum Creek and By the Shores of Silver Lake. In 2002, Cynthia Rylant wrote Old Town in the Green Groves that tells the story of these missing years. The book is illustrated by Jim LaMarchie. (New York: Scholastic, 2002). I haven't yet read this book, but it is a priority on my reading list.

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