Logo for the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library-Museum
Home Exhibits Hoover

Students Educators Laura Ingalls

Laura Ingalls Wilder

Pioneering Journeys of the Ingalls Family

covered wagon Pioneering Introduction covered wagon Pepin covered wagon Montgomery County, Kansas covered wagonWalnut Grovecovered wagon Burr Oak
covered wagon De Smet covered wagon Vinton covered wagonMansfield covered wagon

Born February 7, 1867 Laura Elizabeth Ingalls began her life in the Big Woods of Pepin County, Wisconsin. Her pioneering journeys began just a few years later when Pa started his long search for a productive farm and a permanent home in the west. This journey continued for the next ten years as the Ingallses moved often, faced hard luck, hard work, and shared many adventures which Laura recounted in her "Little House" books. For a decade Charles and Caroline Ingalls looked for a permanent homestead without success. Finally Ma's concern for an education for her girls and opportunities for blind Mary led to one last move west to Dakota Territory.


Laura Ingalls is born near Pepin, Wisconsin.


Ma, Pa, Mary and Laura move to Indian Territory near Independence in Montgomery County in Kansas Territory.


Ingalls family returns to the Big Woods near Pepin, Wisconsin.


Family moves to the banks of PlumCreek, near Walnut Grove, Minnesota.


Ingalls family lives in Burr Oak, Iowa. This is not recorded in Laura's books.


Pa, Ma, and girls return to Walnut Grove, Minnesota.


Ingalls family moves to Dakota Territory near the town of De Smet.


Mary Ingalls leaves De Smet to attend the Iowa College for the Blind in Vinton, Iowa .


Laura, Almanzo and Rose leave De Smet for Mansfield, Missouri.

map of the Ingalls' travels Walnut Grove, Minnesota Pepin, Wisconsin De Smet, Dakota Territory Burr Oak, Iowa Montgomery County, Kansas Territory Mansfield, Missouri Vinton, Iowa
You can find more information about the starred places on the map by clicking on them.








Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum
P.O. Box 488
210 Parkside Drive
West Branch, IA 52358 | 319-643-5301