Before the Prairie Books: The Writings of Laura Ingalls Wilder: 1919 - 1920 The Farm Homeby Dan L. White, Laura Ingalls Wilder
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Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote the American classic Little House on the Prairie, from which the award winning television show was taken. Her first book was published in 1932 but long before that Laura wrote magazine articles on small farming and country living. She and her husband Almanzo lived on a small farm near Mansfield, Missouri from 1894 until their deaths, his in 1949 and hers in 1957, and it is from that happy life that the spirit of her books sprang. Laura’s articles are full of merriment, country lore, and old fashioned wisdom. They are the seed stock of the Little House books.
Laura wrote the articles included in this book during the post war years of 1919 and 1920. After the frugality and self-sacrifice of the war years, the national trend was to be more self-indulgent and less responsible as evidenced by the content of most of her articles.
"The character of each individual one of us affects our national character for good or bad."
"It seems rather impossible that such a small thing as individual selfishness could cause so much trouble, but my selfishness added to your selfishness and that added to the selfishness of our neighbors all over the big, round world is not a small thing."
"The more we think for ourselves, the less we shall need advice and high priced experts would not need to waste their time and government money which is really our money, in telling us things we should think out for ourselves."
"We lay away the gleanings of our years in the edifice of our character where nothing is ever lost. What have we stored away, in this safe place during the season that is past? Is it something that will keep sound and pure and sweet or something that is faulty and not worth storing?"
These nearly 40,000 words of Laura’s writings are accompanied by setting and notes by Dan L. White, a fellow Ozarker who has lived for the last quarter century in Laura’s neck of the woods and has authored several books on Laura, including Laura’s Love Story, Laura Ingalls’ Friends Remember Her and Devotionals with Laura.
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