Feb 7, 1867 CE: Happy Birthday, Laura Ingalls Wilder

Feb 7, 1867 CE: Happy Birthday, Laura Ingalls Wilder

On February 7, 1867, American author Laura Ingalls was born in Pepin County, Wisconsin.


9 - 12


English Language Arts, Geography, Human Geography, Social Studies, U.S. History

NGS Resource Carousel Loading Logo
Loading ...
Selected text level

On February 7, 1867, Laura Elizabeth Ingalls was born in Pepin County, Wisconsin. Ingalls would later describe her home in Wisconsin as the Little House in the Big Woods. The migration of the Ingalls family between Wisconsin, Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa, and the Dakota Territory became the basis for Ingalls’ Little House series of eight children’s novels. Ingalls, who later married farmer Almanzo Wilder and took his last name, wrote about her life as a young girl. Her books addressed responsibilities and social issues faced by white settlers as the U.S. expanded westward in the 19th century. Wilder wrote about tilling the rocky soil of a new farm, making maple syrup in winter, and living in an earthen “dugout” cabin. She did not shy away from uncomfortable topics for young readers. For instance, she wrote about her older sister contracting scarlet fever and going blind as a result. She also wrote that shortly after establishing a residence, the Ingalls family was forced from their land in Kansas—they had unintentionally been homesteading on the Osage reservation. The publication and popularity of the Little House books allowed the Wilders to enjoy financial security during the Great Depression. The novels have never been out of print.

Media Credits

The audio, illustrations, photos, and videos are credited beneath the media asset, except for promotional images, which generally link to another page that contains the media credit. The Rights Holder for media is the person or group credited.

National Geographic Society
National Geographic Society
Last Updated

October 19, 2023

For information on user permissions, please read our Terms of Service. If you have questions about how to cite anything on our website in your project or classroom presentation, please contact your teacher. They will best know the preferred format. When you reach out to them, you will need the page title, URL, and the date you accessed the resource.


If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer. If no button appears, you cannot download or save the media.


Text on this page is printable and can be used according to our Terms of Service.


Any interactives on this page can only be played while you are visiting our website. You cannot download interactives.