American Women!
A Celebration of Our History
April 22 -- October 29, 2000

Frontier Author


"I realized that in my own life I had seen it all.Then I understood that in my own life, I represented a whole period of American history."

Sharpshooter and Wild West Star


"From the time I was nine, I never had a nickel I did not earn for myself."


Americans still dream of wide open spaces and pioneer days. Here, an author and a performer represent true western heroes.

Laura Ingalls Wilder's "Little House" children's books have been enjoyed by hundreds of millions of readers. The joys and sorrows of the Ingalls family are narrated by the author (spunky daughter, Laura) as they homestead across the Midwestern frontier. Vivid descriptions of woodland or prairie landscapes and pioneer life have made this series a classroom standard.

Childhood was less than idyllic for Annie Oakley. Born Phoebe Ann Moses on a farm in Woodland, Ohio, she hunted, trapped, and worked in an asylum to help pay the family mortgage. Oakley became famous when she joined Buffalo Bill Cody's Wild West Show. Nicknamed "Little Sure Shot," she thrilled audiences throughout the U.S. and Europe with her fabulous shooting skills and stunts.

Several movies have contributed to the Annie Oakley legend, and television boosted the popularity of Wilder's books with the 1970s-80s TV show, Little House on the Prairie. We will always think of these women as alive and free on the western plains

Historic Artifacts:

FOREIGN EDITIONS of the "Little House" series by Laura Ingalls Wilder
TABLEWARE used by Wilder
POSTER for The Pioneer Girl, book by Bill Anderson about Laura Ingalls Wilder, and signed by the author and illustrator.
--On loan from Bill Anderson, Lapeer MI

FIRST EDITIONS of the "Little House" series of books by Laura Ingalls Wilder
MAILBOX of Wilder's used to contain hundreds of fan mail letters
QUILT made by school children and presented to Wilder
EYEGLASSES worn by Wilder
CHAIR, mate to the writing chair of Wilder
LAMP, silver kerosene, used by Wilder
-- On loan from the Laura Ingalls Wilder - Rose Wilder Lane Home and Museum, Mansfield MO

DRAFTS and MANUSCRIPTS of Laura Ingalls Wilder's "Little House" series
PHOTOS of Wilder
-- From the collections of the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library-Museum, West Branch IA

TARGET RIFLE, Remington .22, used by Annie Oakley
BRASS DISK used by Oakley for target practice, autographed and dated
GAUNTLETS, worn by Oakley
PISTOL, Colt "Cop & Thug" police revolver, carried by Oakley for self-defense
-- On loan from Buffalo Bill Historical Center, Buffalo Bill Museum, Cody WY

POSTER of Oakley's performances with the Wild West Show
-- Purchased from the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, Circus World Museum Foundation, Baraboo WI

Return to the "From Prairie to Polls, 1870-1920" index page
"red arrow" Continue the story--NEXT..."Jazz to War 1920-1950"
or visit:
  From Colony to Country, 1600-1800 From Fifties to Feminism, 1950-1990
  From Growth to Civil War, 1800-1870 Into the 21st Century, 1990 onward
"red arrow" View an alphabetical list of all 106 women included in American Women! with links to photos and biographies for selected women
"red arrow" View a Thank You to over 100 lenders to Ameican Women!
"red arrow" Return to American Women! index page
"black arrow" Return to Hoover Library-Museum virtual exhibits page
"black arrow" Return to Hoover Library-Museum main index page