Last of This Week, First of the Next

As serious Little House fans, we all know that Laura Ingalls Wilder wasn’t particularly beholden to the absolute truth. And for the most part, this doesn’t bother me. I can forgive her plot discrepancies. I can accept her lapses of memory, even her deliberate distortions of fact. I don’t much care that she folded Stella Gilbert and Genny Masters into the amalgam of Nellie Oleson. And fudging Almanzo’s age? No big deal.

One fact that I didn’t think I’d have to give up was the day of the week on which she and Almanzo were married. He stopped for her on Tuesday, unexpectedly, and they planned to get married as soon as possible in order to avoid a big wedding by his family. They got married nine days later, on Thursday.

Or so Laura wrote.

As I came to find out, this was another fact Laura got wrong. In fact, it’s almost embarrassingly easy to dispute.

I was OK with all the other liberties Laura had taken as a writer, inadvertent or not. But finding out that she’d actually gotten married on a Tuesday, not the Thursday she’d written about in These Happy Golden Years?

I gotta admit that one hurt a little bit.

Happy Anniversary, Laura and Almanzo! “And the twenty-fifth of August had come again, and this winter and summer were the one hundred twenty-third year.”


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