THE FINAL STOP ON MY LAURA INGALLS WILDER TOUR!

We started full time RVing September 1, 2017. A little less than year later, in the summer of 2018, we were in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa.

I have been a lifelong fan of the author Laura Ingalls Wilder who wrote the Little House On the Prairie series of books (and I’m a HUGE fan of the television show!). When I discovered how many of the places were near where we were staying in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa where Laura was born and the family lived, I just KNEW I had to visit each place! Therefore, in the summer of 2018, I started my quest of visiting all locations that had anything to do with Laura or the Ingalls family.

If you are interested in reading those previous posts, you can search this site and find the year 2018. You should be able to find all my posts on this topic between 2018 to 2019. If you are a Laura Ingalls Wilder fan like me, you might really enjoy reading those posts.

This final stop was near Malone, New York. If you’re not familiar with Laura Ingalls Wilder, she married Almanzo Wilder from upstate New York. Well, here is a hint as to where we went:

Yep! If you guessed Almanzo Wilder’s boyhood home, you are correct.

This is the site of the original Wilder family homestead. Almanzo’s father, James Mason Wilder, purchased the property in 1840, cleared the land, and built the buildings. James Wilder and his wife, Angeline, raised six children: Laura (dob: 1844; not to be confused with Laura Ingalls), Royal (1847), Eliza Jane (1850), Alice (1853), Almanzo (1857), and Perley (1869).

Almanzo’s family was considered a wealthy family back in the mid 1800s. I won’t bore you with a lot of narrative about Almanzo’s life (although I did learn a lot from our tour guide!). I will just share some of my photos and add captions when needed.

This is the restored original Wilder house. Those giant trees to the left and the right of the house are over 200 years old, so they were there when the Wilders lived here.
There are several barns, a chicken coup, and a corn crib all surrounding the barn lot. They built the barns this way to provide protection for the animals during inclement weather and winter storms. These are not the original barns (originals were destroyed in a fire), but they are replicas of the barns Almanzo described for his wife, Laura Ingalls Wilder, when she was writing the book Farmer Boy.
Corn crib.
South barn which is quite large houses sheep, cattle, hogs, and a feed room. The small building in the back is the pump house.
View of the barn lot from the south barn.

From this point on, this set of pictures are from the other various barns. I didn’t write down any of the information from our tour guide, so I don’t remember which pics were in which barn. 😬

View of the barn lot from the barn on the other side (from the picture above).

Next we toured the house. This is the original house in which the Wilders lived. It had to have quite a bit of restoration done to it. Dorothy Belle Smith was the person responsible for the discovery and preservation of the Wilder Homestead. This site is dedicated to her.

Again, our tour guide was very knowledgeable about about the Wilders’ lives while living in this house, as well as the extent of the restoration. It was interesting to learn that during the restoration another well was found underneath the pantry. Again, I will just share my photos of the house with an occasional caption.

Kitchen.
Pantry.
Dining room.
Between the dining room and the front parlor was the wood stove used to heat the house. There was a cutout in the wall so the heat would easily disperse between the rooms. This is the view from the dining room.
This is the view from the parlor.
Parlor.
This is Almanzo’s parents’ “master bedroom” which is just off the dining room. One can barely turn around in this tiny room. That blue quilt on the bed is actually Almanzo’s mother’s (it’s only half of the quilt; the other half is at Mansfield, Missouri, in the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum)
This is the guest room, birthing room, or the room for an ill family member.
Next, we went upstairs (basically an attic) to the boys’ room. The boys’ room was the open room into which one walked after climbing the stairs. That opening on the right side of the picture is the stairs which were VERY narrow and VERY steep.
This is the bed in which Almanzo AND his brother slept!
To the left of the boys’ room was the unfinished part of the attic where father and the boys would do their woodworking making shingles and other things for the house and barns.
To the right of the boys’ room is the girls’ room. This was a large room with two beds (one on each side of the room), two closets, and a huge weaving loom in the center.
The loom between the two girls’ beds.
There was a replica of a schoolhouse on the property but it was NOT the schoolhouse that Almanzo attended.

The original schoolhouse where Almanzo attended school was located about a mile away from the Wilder homestead. It was in too bad of shape to even try to move it over to the homestead, so they built the replica. Since I have seen so many schoolhouses from this time period of history, I decided to drop out of the group and tour. We had a really long drive back to the RV, and I knew my husband was getting a little anxious to get “on the road” back to the RV.

So, for now ….. “On the Road Again!”

Betty

WELLS, OGUNQUIT, and CAPE NEDDICK NUBBLE LIGHTHOUSE, Maine

We decided to get out of the RV today (July 17th) and just drive. Since we had gone north several times, we decided to go south towards the coastal town called Ogunquit.

We went south on I 95 for almost 30 miles. Then we took a local road over to the coast. We discovered we were in Wells, Maine, and drove along on Ocean Ave. We couldn’t see the ocean that was just on the other side of the beautiful houses because they were all built up high and on a little hill. There were SO MANY people driving and walking on this road! They were all headed to the beach because it was 86 degrees already and the high was supposed to reach the mid to low nineties. I was disappointed we couldn’t see the beach.

We kept driving south on State Highway 1 towards Ogunquit. We weren’t prepared for the town of Ogunquit! It is a quaint seaside town with a lot of shops; just what you would imagine for a town in Maine on the ocean. We were totally surprised by ALL. THE. PEOPLE!! It was so crowded, no place to park, and the traffic just crawled along the main street through town. Quite frankly, with so many people walking everywhere and stepping out in front of cars, I was too stressed to even take pictures. I would have loved to stop, walk around, and go into some of those cute shops, but it was impossible. So, we drove on through and just enjoyed looking at it all.

Next stop: Cape Neddick Nubble Lighthouse. This was a unique lighthouse because it was on a little island just off shore. No one could get on the island or to the lighthouse except the lighthouse keepers. It was a beautiful setting!

Blue dot circled with red is where our campground is. Wells and Ogunquit are underlined with red. The purple circle and arrow are where the lighthouse is. Do you see that little peninsula? The island with the lighthouse is just off the tip of the peninsula.

The lighthouse was stunning, and the viewing area was really nice. If you look closely and zoom in, several of my photos have seagulls in them. A couple of pics even caught three seagulls in flight!

See that little white gondola thing hanging from the cables? That is how the lighthouse keepers and all their supplies get over there.
If you zoom in on the white gondola, you can see where a couple of bags were loaded into the gondola.
The University of New Hampshire uses this area for scuba diving and conducting underwater research. 🤓🔬

All in all, it was a gorgeous day!

So, for now ….. “On the Road Again!”

Betty

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