Home of Laura Ingalls Wilder
Laura Ingalls Wilder, one of America's best known authors, was born in 1867 near Pepin, Wisconsin. Her "Little House" books were written here on Rocky Ridge Farm, her home for over sixty years.
On July 17, 1894, Laura, her husband Almanzo Wilder, and their seven-year old daughter Rose, left De Smet, South Dakota, in search of a new home. Traveling by covered wagon they arrived in Mansfield on August 30.
On September 24, the Wilders purchased forty acres of land, including the site on which you stand. Here they established Rocky Ridge, a dairy, fruit, and poultry farm. A new house was built and the farm enlarged to nearly two hundred acres.
In 1911, Laura started a career as a journalist, writing about rural life. Between 1932 and 1943, she published the "Little House" books from her memories of pioneer life.
Almanzo died at Rocky Ridge in 1949, at the age of 92. Laura lived here until her death at 90, in 1957.
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In 1915, Laura and Almanzo's daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, began her writing career on "The San Francisco Bulletin." She served as a reporter in Europe after World War I. Rose became famous for her short stories, biographies, and novels.
During the 1920's and 1930's, she again made Rocky Ridge her home. Her novel Old Home Town
described turn-of-the-century Mansfield. In 1932 she wrote her most famous novel, Let the Hurricane Roar
, while living here in the white farmhouse.
That same year Laura Ingalls Wilder published Little House in the Big Woods
, the first book of her pioneer series. Farmer Boy
, published in 1933, told of Almanzo's boyhood. Seven more "Little House" books followed. All are international classics.
Laura Ingalls Wilder and Rose Wilder Lane are revered for writings which stress independence, courage, and American ideals.