Welcome to De Smet, South Dakota! You’ll find plenty of things to do here, including experiencing a piece of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s history. From visiting the Ingalls Homestead and exploring Laura’s Living Prairie to paying your respects at the De Smet Cemetery and learning more about her life at the Wilder Welcome Center and De Smet Depot Museum – there’s something for everyone in this small town. So if you’re looking for a unique trip that will educate and entertain, explore all the fantastic things to do in De Smet!
Ingalls Homestead – Laura’s Living Prairie
Ingalls Homestead: Laura’s Living Prairie, located in De Smet, South Dakota, is a living history museum that offers visitors a unique chance to step back in time and explore the life of pioneer girl Laura Ingalls Wilder. From the moment you arrive, you’ll be transported to the 1880s as you make your way through the vast open prairie. Here, you’ll find log cabins and sod houses like those found in Little House on the Prairie, now used as classrooms for educational programming.
The property holds special events throughout the year, such as dances, harvest celebrations, and hands-on activities like churning butter or harvesting crops. You’ll get a feel for what life was like for pioneers during this era by participating in these activities. The homestead also hosts nature walks led by experienced guides who will show you different plant and animal species found on the prairie and how Native Americans would have interacted with this land.
Visitors can also explore the many artifacts of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s life displayed at the homestead. These include old photographs of the family, tools, furniture used by settlers in their daily lives during this period, and other items related to her stories, such as school books or dolls she may have had when she was young.
There is something for everyone at Ingalls Homestead – Laura’s Living Prairie. Whether learning about what life was like for those who lived on America’s frontier or simply enjoying some time outdoors surrounded by beautiful scenery – it’s an experience not to be missed!
Laura Ingalls Wilder Historic Homes
Visitors to De Smet, South Dakota, can take a step back in time by visiting the Laura Ingalls Wilder Historic Homes. This site offers visitors a chance to explore the lives of Laura and her husband, Almanzo, and their family. Tour the original homestead, now preserved as a living prairie, visit the reconstructed log cabin where they lived for ten years, and stroll the grounds of their farmstead.
At the homestead, visitors will find a guided tour of the reconstructed log cabin built in 1879 by Almanzo Wilder. Inside, you’ll see how Laura and Almanzo lived during this period with furniture they made themselves and artifacts from their day-to-day life. You can also check out demonstration gardens that feature plants grown at the time, like potatoes, squash, onions, and corn. Plus, interpretive displays throughout the home help tell Laura’s story.
If you want an even more authentic experience, you can participate in hands-on activities like churning butter or weaving rugs – just like Laura did! The team at the homestead also offers numerous events throughout the year, such as candlelight tours and singing programs, so be sure to check out what’s on offer when visiting this historical site.
The work done by Laura Ingalls Wilder has been essential to preserving our history, so it’s worth taking some time to explore this site when in De Smet. Whether you’re looking for an educational experience or want to appreciate some old-world charm – you won’t be disappointed!
De Smet Cemetery
The De Smet Cemetery is a historic landmark in the small town of De Smet, South Dakota. Located on the north edge of town, this cemetery has been home to many beloved Laura Ingalls Wilder family members and other early settlers. It is a beautiful place with a peaceful atmosphere that honors those before us.
Visitors can stroll around the grounds of this cemetery and enjoy its natural beauty and historical significance. As they take in the sights, they will see many headstones bearing names from the Ingalls family and other pioneers who helped shape De Smet into what it is today. The cemetery also contains several notable graves, including those of Almanzo Wilder (Laura’s husband) and their infant daughter Rose Wilder Lane (who was an author).
Within the De Smet Cemetery are also several memorials honoring those first settlers. One such monument is dedicated to “the Old Settlers’ Club,” which was formed by some of De Smet’s original colonists and was active until 1951. Numerous statues throughout the cemetery also feature people from different eras and backgrounds that help tell the story of De Smet’s past.
If you’re looking for a quiet place to reflect on history or pay your respects, then make sure to check out the De Smet Cemetery!
Wilder Welcome Center
The Wilder Welcome Center in De Smet, SD, is the perfect place to start your exploration of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s world. It offers many activities and exhibits to help you learn more about her life and the area.
The Welcome Center has interactive displays and audio presentations offering an in-depth look at Laura’s childhood in De Smet. You’ll also find information about the town’s history and tips on how to make the most out of your visit.
You can also explore the museum store, which features books and souvenirs related to Laura’s life and times, including kitchenware, clothing, jewelry, dolls, music boxes, and more. There are even replica artifacts from the Ingalls family home that you can take home with you!
The Wilder Welcome Center also hosts special events throughout the year, including lectures on local history topics, book signings by authors specializing in “Little House” literature, art shows featuring works inspired by Laura’s stories, and much more. Whether you’re looking for educational opportunities or want to experience a bit of nostalgia from days gone by, the Wilder Welcome Center is a great place to start!
De Smet Depot Museum
The De Smet Depot Museum offers a unique look at the history of Laura Ingalls Wilder and her family in the area. The museum is located in the original 1870s De Smet Depot building and features exhibits that explore the life and times of this famous author. Visitors can view artifacts from the Ingalls family, including clothing, photographs, furniture, and other items the family used during their time in De Smet. There are also interactive exhibits featuring recordings of stories from Laura’s books and audio reenactments from her life. Additionally, visitors can learn about the impact of railroads on settlements in De Smet. The museum also has a gift shop with books about Laura Ingalls Wilder and merchandise related to her work. It’s an excellent place for anyone interested in learning more about this beloved author’s life and legacy!
As the hometown of Laura Ingalls Wilder, De Smet, South Dakota, is a place of immense historical significance. Here, visitors can explore the Ingalls Homestead – Laura’s Living Prairie and visit all the historic homes associated with her life. There is also the De Smet Cemetery, Wilder Welcome Center, and the De Smet Depot Museum to explore. These attractions make this small town a must-see destination for anyone learning more about pioneer life in America. If you want to experience something unique, head over to De Smet and explore all it offers!