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“Absolutely wonderful” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Ingalls Homestead - Laura's Living Prairie

Ingalls Homestead - Laura's Living Prairie
Ranked #1 of 4 things to do in De Smet
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
bethesda, md
Level Contributor
26 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Absolutely wonderful”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 10, 2012

The people who worked here were so gracious and welcoming. My children loved the covered wagon ride, and the curricles. They enjoyed the barn kittens and chicks, and seeing the calf. One of the kids who worked there told me the owners try to make it a nice experience for them, as well as for the public, and it showed. We would come back again and again!

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank dalene14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
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English first
Bloomington, Indiana
Level Contributor
84 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Very nice experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 4, 2012

My 10 year old daughter and I visited in early July and had a very nice time. We stayed in a covered wagon and found it very clean and comfortable. The only problem was that people visiting the homestead kept using our picnic table to eat their meals. My daughter loved the homestead and was able to run around the farm in the morning while I was packing up. There were lots of baby animals for her to enjoy. I am very glad we made this a part of our summer vacation.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Jennifer P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salt Lake City, Utah
Level Contributor
144 reviews
57 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 375 helpful votes
“So glad we booked the wagon to stay in.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 28, 2012

This is the actual land that Pa took out and proved up as a homesteader, the same original 160 acres has been owned by 30 different people and yet was never divided. For the last 15 years the current owners have recreated the farm that Pa and Ma and Mary and Laura and Carrie and Grace would have lived on. What a wonderful undertaking. It allows all the rest of us who have come to love and adore this pioneer family to feel their spirit and have the books come to real life.

First you will come to the the large gift shop, stop and by a souvenir. Right outside is the tower. This is for those unable to spend the time to wander around the property. But for the entrance fee one can walk the same ground the Ingalls did. I can't say how much it was as we paid for our campwagon, the entrance to the pageant and entrance to the homestead all together. Very convenient.

Walking to the left you first arrive at the dugout and claim shanty which are tucked out of the way since they would not have been here originally. Then you come to the corner acre which is owned by the Memorial Society and must be entered from the street. It is here that the old cottonwoods live on that Laura verified were planted by her Pa.

Next is the large Hay Barn with a cow and chickens and kittens. This felt so right. Next to that was the very authentic re-created home as Pa would have completed it, with the addition they put on to hold Mary's organ. It is furnished and it is so fun to see the little whatnot and the two bedrooms and kitchen and an organ just like Mary had. Not too far is a pump where you can pump water. Close by is the wagonwheel of prairie flowers.

Further on is the activity barn where we twisted rope and ground wheat and twisted hay sticks and took the wagon ride. I'm glad we took the wagon ride, our driver was so fun and made sure everyone who wanted to could take hold of the reins. We passed the wheat field and the corn field and the oat field. Off to the side was an area of recreated prairie and a portion of the old slough where egrets were nesting. We headed to the school where our teacher took us through a whole day of school with riddles and punishment and math and a spelling contest. Loved her! There is also a small chapel down the other way which we were unable to get to.

Best part of all was sleeping the night on the property in the old wagon, comfortable and cozy. There are four wagons and room for tents. It was an amazing thing to sleep on the homestead and watch the sun light up the prairie. Laura's spirit lives on here.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
6 Thank Kbecjeans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Worth, Texas
Level Contributor
21 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“So much fun!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 28, 2012

I loved it! We saw so many reconstructed models of the dwellings of the Ingalls family in the De Smet area. I love the series, and the homestead lived up to it!

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
Thank ericamoody
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great time for our family!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 27, 2012

We spent the morning in DeSmet touring the exhibits in town and then came here after lunch - we had a great time and we all enjoyed the hands on activities, covered wagon rides, horse rides etc. The staff was very friendly and welcoming. The school stop was very fun and our "teacher" was great!! Everyone was very knowledgeable about Laura and pioneer life.
The kids really enjoyed everything, and it was hard to get them to leave at the end of the day!
Overall - a great time for any family. (our girls 4,7,15 all had fun)

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
Thank B7676
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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