Almanzo Wilder: Life Before Laura DVD Review




If you loved watching “Little House on the Prairie”, you will love watching ALMANZO WILDER: Life Before Laura by Legacy Documentaries.

Dean Butler is the Executive Producer who also played Almanzo Wilder on the “Little House on the Prairie” television series from 1979 to 1983.


“ALMANZO WILDER: Life Before Laura” is a documentary that was produced in partnership with the Almanzo and Laura Ingalls Wilder Association in Burke, NY. What I found fascinating was this was made by visual and text excerpts from Farmer Boy written by Laura Ingells Wilder. It gives a look at Almanzo’s early life through original footage and re-creations shot on location at the Wilder Homestead.

I had no idea that The Wilder Homestead was located in northern New York. The homestead has been restored and offers visitors a distinctively revealing view of Almanzo’s youth and American farm life in the mid-1800s.

I was very surprised at how much interest my son showed in watching this with me. He stopped to ask me many questions. One of them was if we had the book Farmer Boy. My son isn’t really familiar with “Little House on the Prairie” as it was on while I was growing up.

I really liked how it talked about how he grew up. I loved how he would sneak in and watch the horses as he had the desire to train the horses. I was actually in awe at the kindness that was used in training the horses. I didn’t understand though why it took a man to train them and why he couldn’t get near them. My son thought it was really neat that he did get to train the oxen from little on to do the farm work.

I think another thing my son found really fascinating was the one room school. How all the kids were in one classroom. As of course that’s not how traditional classrooms were. Also I think he was amazed at how much work kids did back then to help with the family farm.

I was really impressed with how they restored The Wilder Homestead. I think it’s great that people can visit to get a glimpse of what farm like was like. They can also step in the very room that Almanzo grew up in. I like that they have activities there and re-enactments of life during those times. I hope to someday take my kids there.

They did mention Pepin, Wisconsin along with other places like Minnesota, Missouri, Iowa and I can’t remember the others. I didn’t catch what those were about as my daughter was talking during that time. I do know there is a house in Pepin, Wisconsin. I know there is also a Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum around there. I do plan to go back as we did see the house. Very fascinating.

As for what age do I think this is for,well I think if you can read the books and listen to audio books then you can certainly watch this DVD and understand what is going on.

You can purchase this DVD for $21.95.


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