A Family on the Move
From left to right: Carrie, Mary, and Laura Ingalls around 1882. Mary had lost her sight three years earlier.
The young family would soon realize that the Kansas land wasn't open to settlers, so over the next few years, they spent time in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa. Grace Pearl was born in May, 1877, and the family was struggling to make ends meet. In 1879, Charles accepted a job as a clerk and bookkeeper with the railroad in Dakota Territory, which sparked the move to the town of De Smet in 1880. The following winter's terrible storms and conditions would be the basis for the novel, The Long Winter.