AUTHOR EVENT: Caroline Fraser on Laura Ingalls Wilder

  • When Feb 13, 2018 from 07:00 PM to 08:00 PM
  • Where Cultural Heritage Center, 900 Governors Drive, Pierre, SD 57501
  • Contact Name
  • Contact Phone 605-773-6006
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History and Heritage Book Club Program to Celebrate Laura Ingalls Wilder, Feb. 13, 7:00pm


pgp-pf.jpgBestselling author Caroline Fraser is speaking remotely to the History and Heritage Book Club in Pierre and De Smet about her research on the American author Laura Ingalls Wilder. Fraser's latest book is Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder, she also contributed an essay to Pioneer Girl Perspectives: Exploring Laura Ingalls Wilder, which was published by the South Dakota Historical Society Press in 2017. 

Wilder was born on February 7, 1867. Her Little House novels continue to shape modern ideas of pioneer life on the American frontier. Before Little House in the Big Woods was published in 1932, Wilder previously wrote her memoir, Pioneer Girl, which publishers rejected. The manuscript remained unpublished until the Press published Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography in November 2014.

"Prairie Fires was selected as one of the New York Times Book Review’s 10 Best Books of 2017. This program gives people the opportunity to learn the author’s insights into the book,” said Catherine Forsch, president of the South Dakota Historical Society Foundation. The foundation is the nonprofit fundraising partner of the South Dakota State Historical Society. The foundation and the South Dakota Historical Society Press are sponsoring this FREE program, which everyone is welcome to attend.

Pioneer Girl Perspectives is a collection of essays edited by Nancy Tystad Koupal, director of the Pioneer Girl Project. Fraser's essay examines the professional relationship between Wilder and her daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, highlighting the strange case of the "Bloody Benders." Wilder and Lane's working partnership is also at the heart of Prairie Fires. Fraser will expand on this relationship and other important research from both projects.

Join the Discussion

If your community wants to join the event, call (605) 773-6006 to connect to the DDN, the state's video conferencing network. Currently the program will broadcast at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre and the Middle School in De Smet.

About the Author

Caroline Fraser is editor of the Library of America’s two-volume edition of Wilder’s Little House books and has written about Wilder and other topics for magazines and other publications. She holds a doctorate in literature from Harvard University.

About the State Historical Society

The South Dakota State Historical Society is a division of the Department of Education. The State Historical Society, an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is headquartered at the South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. The center houses the society’s world-class museum, the archives, and the historic preservation, publishing and administrative/development offices. Call (605) 773-3458 or visit www.history.sd.gov for more information. The society also has an archaeology office in Rapid City; call (605) 394-1936 for more information.