Thursday, May 12, 2011

My Revue on Almanzo Wilder!

I know I have done the revue on the Farmer Boy book. Then someone mentioned to me about Almanzo having more siblings. Then after doing some research I found out that these siblings were never mentioned in the Farmer Boy book. So I decided to write this about Almanzo so everyone had the chance to know a little more about him.

Almanzo James Wilder was born on February 13, 1857 in Malone New York and he passed away on October 23, 1949 in Mansfield Missouri at the age of 92. 

He married Laura Ingalls Wilder and he was the father to Rose Wilder Lane.

He was the fifth child to James Wilder ( 1813-1899) and Angeline Day Wilder (1821-1905) both were farmers. His siblings are Laura Ann (1844-1899), Royal Gould  (1847-1925), Eliza Jane ( 1850-1930), Alice M ( 1853- 1892), Perley Day (1869- 1934).

The two siblings not mentioned in the books are Laura Ann she is the oldest out of the children and Perley Day is the youngest out of the children. About Laura Ann is they didn't want to confuse the readers with the two Laura's. When they moved out to Spring Valley Laura Ann spent most of her time by her aunt and uncle's house. But Laura Ann and Laura Ingalls did meet and did do sewing together. After Laura Ann's husband passed away she moved down to Louisiana by Eliza Jane.  The only thing I could find on Perley Day is that he had moved to Louisiana also. He did marry and had children.

In 1875 the Wilder's left Malone New York to head out wet due to crop failure. They settled in Spring Valley Minnesota in 1879. Almanzo was 22 years old. Almanzo, Royal and Eliza Jane moved to Dakota Territory buying land there. Later it would be called De Smet South Dakota. He settled on his homestead with the intent to harvest acres of wheat. This is were he first met Laura Ingalls.

Laura was 15 years old and Almanzo was 25 years old when they began courting. Three years later they married on August 25, 1885. They lived on Almanzo's land and began their own farming operations. The on December 5, 1886 they had Rose.

In 1888 while Rose was still a baby Almanzo and Laura were stricken with Diphtheria they both survived. Almanzo suffered from a less common illness called " Neuritis" and part of his lower limbs were temporarily paralyzed. When he got better he still needed a cane to walk.

In 1889 Laura gave birth to a son and in early August there son remained unnamed and two weeks later he passed away of convulsions. The same month they lost there home and there crops caused by a drought.

In 1890 they moved to Spring Valley Missouri and lived with Almanzo's family. Then from 1891-1892 the moved to Westville Florida in hope it would help Almanzo regain strength with the warm weather. They moved back to De Smet South Dakota in 1892. They rented a house in town and they lived near Laura's parents and Rose was able to start school early.

On Jully 17, 1894 they moved to the Ozarks of Missouri.  They seen a brochure of " The land of the Big Red Apple". On August 30 they arrived near Mansfield Missouri and put $100 down payment on 40 acres. The land was all hills and Rocks undeveloped land. That is how Laura named it " Rocky Ridge Farm".This was there final home for 20 years. There luck has changed for the better and they were happy and successful. Laura got her dream home that Almanzo built and he built custom cabinets. The farm eventually expanded to 200 acres of poultry, dairy, fruit, horses and goats. They were every active with the community and church.

Almanzo spent his last year tending to a small vegetable and flower garden and doing his wood work, carpentry and tending to his goats. He also aided his wife with greeting car loads of Little House Fans that found there way to Rocky Ridge farm. When Almanzo passed away he suffered from two heart attacks.

Many of Almanzo's possessions and handiwork can be seen at Rocky Ridge Farm and at the Laura Ingalls Wilder/Rose Wilder Lane museums as well as the Malone, New York and Spring Valley Minnesota museums.

Rose's book called Free Land is based on Almanzo Wilder.


  1. I nearly forgot that all these charachters are real people! Wow..I only remember the handsome young Almanzo in the TV series and how he fell in love with Laura. Have you been to their house? Must be exciting to be in it and imagine how live it was inside! Thanks for this post..I really enjoy it!

  2. You are very welcome. No I have not been to any of the houses yet. I am hoping my boyfriend and I can go one year to see them. There are three different homes to go and see and in three different states. I am glad you are enjoying what I am writing about. Thank you for reading this.

  3. Hello My name is Jason Wilder and I got laughed at and teased by a friend from Active Duty when I was stationed in New York with the 10th Mountain Division. When I told him that I was a distant relative of Laura Ingalls Wilder and Almanzo. He was going off of the Actors and Actresess on the T.V. show and didn't realize that the T.V. show was based off of Laura's Books and Acual people. So, Don't feel to bad HLiza OK and I got the last laugh because I proved him to be wrong. Basically Almanzo and I both are decendants of Thomas Wilder Senior circa (?/1618-1667) the split comes from the fact that Almanzo is the decendant of Thomas Junior and I am a decendant of Nathaniel Wilder Thomas Jr.'s youngest brother then there is a third brother John. Thomas Jr. (1644-1771),John (1646-1718), and Nathaniel (1655-1704). Well hope this is appreciated by you thank you and take care.

  4. Thank you Anonymous. That is something I never knew either. In the books it only talks about Almanzo's family and nobody else. I am glad to hear there is still family out there. I am sorry for what you have been through with people not believing you. Thank you for looking at my blog about the books. I do really appreicate that.