In 1897, the Wilders purchased a house in town and lived there for the next few years. Laura took in boarders and served meals while Almanzo went to the farm each day to work. In this way, they were able to bring in money until the farm could become productive.
The Wilders eventually moved the built-on room a short distance away, and began building the beautiful farmhouse that still stands today. It grew room by room until its completion in 1913.
Meanwhile, their daughter Rose, had left Mansfield, not being satisfied with small town life. She married Claire Gillette Lane in 1909, had an infant son who died in the summer of 1910, and divorced Gillette in 1919. In later years, she returned to Rocky Ridge. She and her friend Helen Boylston moved into the farmhouse, and in 1928, Rose had a rock house with modern conveniences built for her parents. After Rose moved out in 1936, however, Almanzo and Laura returned to the farmhouse, saying they were homesick. They remained at the farmhouse until their deaths.
The modern rock house that Rose had built for her parents was restored in the 1990s and is now also available for tours. A walking path leads visitors between the two houses.
Other Mansfield points of interest include the Laura Ingalls Wilder Library, the Mansfield Historical Society and Museum, and the Mansfield cemetery, where Laura, Almanzo, and Rose are buried.
"Little House Memories" is an outdoor pageant which recreates scenes from Laura's books, held on weekends during late summer and early fall. Wilder Days is held each September, and features arts and crafts, music, and a parade.
Laura Ingalls Wilder - Rose Wilder Lane Home and Museum
Mansfield, Missouri 65704