I’m a new voice appearing here on Beyond Little House. I was supposed to be posting all along, but an illness this spring and its after effects have kept me from posting before now. I hope I am back to a point where I can post regularly so you will see me here often from here on in.
As it is my first post here I want to talk about one of my current, if not new, projects. During her lifetime, Laura Ingalls Wilder responded to every fan letter she received, until the last 6 months of her life. She saved the fan letters and all are carefully preserved. Ironically, her responses were scattered to the four winds and while some have come safely to rest in museums, archives, and libraries across the country, others currently reside in scrapbooks, the backs of drawers, in musty files, and in old shoe boxes tied up with ribbon and carefully put away. As interest in Laura continues to grow, now is the time to bring those letters to light.
Please help make sure those letters aren’t lost forever. In conjunction with the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum in Walnut Grove, Minnesota, I’m seeking photocopies of Laura letters. These would be scholarly study copies only and will be deposited in the newly built archive room at the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum in Walnut Grove, Minnesota.
I’m also seeking photos of any of the Wilder museum sites pre-1985 or photos of any special local Wilder events, such as gingerbread parties that you might have attended. Copies are accepted by photocopy, photography or scan sent by e-mail. Thank-you for your help and please help to spread the word.
I’ve been tracking letters from people and in archives across the country. My campaign has brought to light several in libraries across the country, such as the Cedar Rapids (Iowa) Public Library and the Grand Forks (Nebraska) Public library. Individuals from Iowa City to California have also contributed letters to the collection. The letters have provided information about things ranging from Wilder’s trip back to Pepin in 1890 to a description to how a famous 1930 of Wilder was taken to a hesitation on Wilder’s part to receive more mail during her husband’s illness eventually leading to his death in Oct. 1949. These letters have other information to share. Please help us find it. I have now collected 21 letters and deposited them with the Walnut Grove archive. If you know of any letter or would be willing to post a flyer or know of a place for free publicity, since this is my own private project, please let me know.
Send photocopies to:
P.O. Box 111
Solon IA 52333
Sarah S. Uthoff