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“Awesome place to visit!”

Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Walnut Grove Minnesota is the childhood home of author Laura Ingalls Wilder who penned the “Little House” series of books. The Museum consists of 9 structures telling the stories of the Ingalls' family and other early pioneers to Walnut Grove; several of which are mentioned in Laura's book "On the Banks of Plum Creek". A great family friendly environment with several hands on locations throughout the complex of buildings. Visit in July on one of 3 weekends for our Wilder Pageant and Family Festival.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Wheelchair access, Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities
Perham, Minnesota
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Awesome place to visit!”
Reviewed 15 July 2013

Any fan of Laura Ingalls Wilder and the TV show Little House On The Prairie NEEDS to check out the museum in Walnut Grove. You first start off in the gift shop, where you pay admission and then can go investigate several buildings that are mostly replicas, but you get the idea. There is a church, a schoolhouse, a depot, Grandma's House, a homestead, a dugout, and another building with Walnut Grove life from the 1870s.

Fans of the TV show will enjoy the exhibits with the TV memorabilia. My favorite was the Plum Creek Experience, where you could make dolls, play a parlor organ, and do different activities that Laura and her family may have done. There is also a huge doll exhibit in Grandma's House, which was quite impressive. The replica sod house (dugout) was tiny, and it was amazing to think that a family of five would live in a small place.

The staff at the museum was very friendly and helpful, which was awesome. The lady gave me a map of Walnut Grove sites and told me how to get to the actual dugout site of the Ingalls family. I would recommend doing the museum first, then the dugout site, and then the Walnut Grove sites.

Overall, it was a great experience, and I will definitely return someday.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
5 Thank KristineS51
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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111 reviews from our community

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English first
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Laura Ingalls Dugout Walnut Grove”
Reviewed 26 June 2013

The dug out area is calm, quiet and very pretty. Kind of takes you back in time as you walk. The house is gone but they have the spot marked very well. The town itself has a few spots marked where the original church and school once stood but are now private homes. The town seemed very quiet, everything pretty much closed down the Sunday we were visiting. The museum staff were very nice.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Robin L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pittsburgh, PA
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Walnut Grove Museum”
Reviewed 23 June 2013

The Walnut Grove museum was small but nice. They have a dugout/sod house the same size as what the dugout on Plum Creek would have been. TINY! If you are going to Plum Creek site (has no house) was worth going to the museum just to see that. They also had some memorabilia of the times that didn't necessarily belong to the Ingalls but similar (a buffalo coat like Pa's, the big green book of animals the kids got to look at on Sundays, etc) as well as photos and short stories about the families mentioned in the book.
There is one room devoted to the TV series which I didn't like much but my 10 year old loved. There are some other little period buildings, but the school in Desmet is the actual one the girls went to.
The gift shop is nice.
Definitely go to Plum Creek homesite if you've come this far!

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank ststogo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Shawnee, Kansas
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Very Impressed!”
Reviewed 14 June 2013

We were welcomed by very friendly staff who we eager to answer any questions we had. The gift shop was very nice, well organized and had a nice variety of items in every price range. The museum, which is actually several different buildings, was self led and very nice. Most everything was hands on and kid friendly. They offered a lot of good history of the Ingalls family and Walnut Grove. The gift shop was free to enter. There was a fee for the museum, $6.00 adult and $3.00 children. We also ordered a few items to be sent to our house prior to our trip to Walnut Grove. They did a great job of shipping in a timely manner. Signing the guest book is a must!

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
Thank djohnson2173
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stanley, North Dakota
Level 5 Contributor
49 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Good enough”
Reviewed 6 June 2013

I was driving through, and came across this museum. I decided to stop, being a huge history nut, especially of the pioneer era. It was very cold and rainy--so I didn't spend much time outside and in the different buildings. I just wanted to make sure I got into the schoolhouse--those are my favorite buildings.
What's good--the gift shop is huge, was a great place to hang out when it got too cold outside. So much of the goodies to purchase!
What's good/o.k.--the outside buildings are....well, o.k. I wish there was a sign about the schoolhouse, whether that was an actual school or not. It's SO small...I have a hard time believing it was an actual school. Some historical info may have been nice (unless I missed it when i was in there--I was traveling with a 5-month old so may have been distracted trying to drive the stroller in and out of there).
I have this humongous problem with many museums--as someone who loves living history, and hands-on experiences, nothing bothers me more than feeling like you're corralled around a building, most of it being roped off or under big glass cases. The big farmhouse was like that. For the little kids, there's the advantage of a room out in the back where they can touch stuff. But everything else is off limits. For me personally, that bugs me.
Like a lot of pioneer museums, it's good for the kiddies. But it's also like MANY other pioneer museums, a cookie-cutter one if I may say.
The fact that it was Memorial Day, I didn't have to pay any sort of fee, so that was awesome. I didn't see much else because it was May (so no festivals), and it was rainy (so no trip to the actual homestead). The staff was very nice as well.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank katens27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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