Fans visiting the last of Laura’s homes on Rocky Ridge
Farm in Mansfield, Missouri will discover the chapters
of Laura’s life which contain events that honed her
writing skills and ultimately inspired her
cherished Little House books.
The Historic Farmhouse
As visitors make their trek to the historic Rocky Ridge Farm, the first sight they’ll see is Laura’s and Almanzo’s beloved farmhouse. It remains as it was in 1957 and stands as an official project of the Save America’s Treasures National Trust for Historical Preservation.
As the story goes, Laura, Almanzo and Rose moved to Mansfield, Missouri in 1894. They had saved $100 to buy land just outside of town. The two worked side-by-side for nearly twenty years in seeing the rocky land transform into a sprawling 200 acres of farmland, which included an apple orchard and space for Almanzo’s Morgan horses. During this time, they lived in the town of Mansfield while Alamanzo commuted to and from the farm. Eventually the family moved into a one room log cabin on the farm until 1913, when the farmhouse was finally complete.
The home was always a central theme to Laura’s life. The farmhouse held a very special place in both Laura’s and Almanzo’s hearts as they chose to live the last of their days here. It is only fitting that the Little House books were written by hand on tablets of paper at both homes on Rocky Ridge Farm. Visitors can tour the home and see her study and writing desk, as well as the many treasures that remain exactly how Laura left them.
Restoration of the Wilder
Family Walking Trail
Part of the serene charm of Rocky Ridge Farm is taking time to relax and enjoy its beautiful natural setting. The Wilder Family Walking Trail has always been a way for visitors to immerse themselves in this experience. One can only imagine the conversations that took place between Laura, Almanzo and Rose or feel they’re walking the pages of history. The trail was originally used by the Wilders as passage between the Farmhouse and the Rock House – Laura and Almanzo’s second home. Currently, it is in need of repair, and plans are underway to restore it to its natural setting.
Please donate today so we can expedite
restoration and reopen this trail for all
to enjoy once again.
The Rock House
Rose Wilder Lane, the Wilders’ only daughter, was a successful author in her own right. She went on to pursue her career outside of the small town of Mansfield, but eventually returned to her roots on Rocky Ridge Farm. Upon her return in 1928, Rose had a house built with modern conveniences as a gift to her parents. Laura and Almanzo moved in at Christmas time that very same year. It became known as the Rock House because of its custom rock masonry siding. Following some encouragement from Rose, Laura began writing down childhood memories that would forever capture her amazing history and the pioneering life she had lived.
It was in the Rock House that Laura, at 65 years young, wrote the first four Little House books. Visitors can tour the beautifully-restored Rock House on Rocky Ridge Farm and learn of its unique building secrets. Laura and Almanzo lived in this home until 1936, when they finally returned to their beloved farmhouse.