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 How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?

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Praire Girl
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PostSubject: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Fri Jul 13, 2012 5:17 pm

I love this show, but it does make it seem like it wasn't quite a hard as it was in some episodes. I understand why, many chores and things aren't attractive, but what have you noticed missing or not shown?

I never saw Caroline use a washboard, just hanging clothes. I never saw her show how hard it was to make dinner, it was always "in the pot". I never saw the root cellar she mentioned once (thought they used the soddie)and I can't recall seeing the vegetable garden.
I also, on a side note, never saw anyone except Carrie use the outhouse or even mention having to use it and I never saw any of them bath or see how they washed their hair, etc. (not counting the green hair episode) : )
Not nit-picking, just in a funny way, think life seemed a bit easier at times than it was.
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Davetucson
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PostSubject: Realism   Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:06 pm

I read an interview where Michael took license with the show as it pertained to the books, becuase if he would have based it on the books themselves, it would have been WAY TOO DARK and people would not have watched it.

Those people had a hard time surviving. It was no walk in the park.

Charles bathed in the barn several times or went to the creek that was conviently in the front of the house. There were several times when Laura or Albert were in the barn in the bathtub.
Mike liked to show kids running to the outhouse. He did it in Father Murphy a lot.
There are people that say that Simi Valley doesn't resemble Plum Creek in Walnut Grove. I think it did. I've seen lots of pictures of Walnut Grove and Plum Creek was a lot like the creek shown in the show.

It certainly didn't look like DeSmit North Dakota or the plains, but thats not where the show took place.

Plum Creek In Walnut Grove, MN.

Walnut Grove Today




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littlehouselover
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:32 pm

I think it was close enough, you do what you have to do to make it work. He got the point across. The pics are great.
Karen Grassle has said she wanted it to be prettier at home (like the Carter's did later) but the "men" wouldn't listen to her in the beginning and she wanted it grittier, but again, Michael had a different vision.

She was always beautiful, never used the outhouse, never mentioned washing up or doing her hair, but always perfect. I loved her. Smile

I do remember seeing Alice using a wash board and sweating which was realistic, but making cheese, butter, showing them storing things for winter, canning,that could have been going on in the background. It did seem no matter how late Caroline worked, supper was done and on the table without a microwave!
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Vanesa
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sat Jul 14, 2012 1:08 am

I for one, I would see LHOTP if it were more realistic than it wa showed by TV. I'm not scared for hard working. Besies, part of my family was pioneer too, and when two of my great-grannies told me about the fascination of it, I rather liked it than hate it. And even if it seems odd enough for our microwave civilization, yes...they always have supper ready for their family! Since work was so hard it was needed a lot of food to go ahead. Peope would eat a lot more than nowadays, and they used to be normally thin, because they worked a lot and would "burn" all the fat of their bodies. grinsmiley

The thing that chocked me the more about LHOTO was the too much drama they put in the show, not the hard working. This drama was the thing that was more unrealistic for me (Mary becoming blind was true, but not her accident with the horse , the one who brought her to have surgery more than once while Pa must work at the rilroad just to pay the hospital bills...And then Mary lost her baby in a fire, Albert was dead from leukemia, James was shoot, Mr. Edwards lost his family because his alcoolism, Alice Garvey also dead in a fire, John Jr. was murdered in Chicago, Ma discover's her owm mother's coffin when she was waiting her to visit...Ugh. All this give me chills!!!) . If people kept watching LHOTP despite all this death and sickness and tragedy, no doubt they will kept watching it if they would show people making cheese, butter (my own great grandma used to churn butter) and working hard in their fields...Just a thought. scratchead

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Praire Girl
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sat Jul 14, 2012 7:26 am

I agree,showing how dirty they really would get is not something I would want to see or watch, but I'd take some realism in the practicalities on occasion over some of the drama and death. I t didn't have to be a plot but just show Ma plucking the bird for dinner or getting the washboard ready for doing clothes or canning jam.
I think with Mary's accident, it was a bit much to have them go in twice, but it was realistic that they couldn't pay. I used to wish that they just showed Charles having a good crop once without a tornado, hail, grasshoppers or something taking it. Farmers are very hardworking and they do lose crops but not every season. And although he worried about it being "too dark" I guess seeing what goes into getting through the day would be less dark than seeing Mrs Garvey burning with an infant or a girl being raped or a grandpa trying to burn himself alive. Just saying. Smile
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Davetucson
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sat Jul 14, 2012 8:30 am

Well, I think we can all agree on one thing, good or bad, up or down, sad or happy, realistic or unrealistic,

We All Loved It!


"Albert, do you REALLY think you are old enough to know what love is?"
"I must be Pa. I love you, I have for a long time."
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littlehouselover
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sat Jul 14, 2012 8:42 am

I know I did, which is why sometimes I wish the end of the show, the last few years, were done better, but the beginning was wonderful. Every time it begins again or I catch those first shows where everyone is young and it's more about values and working together, it gives me a warm feeling.
I've had days when I didn't have a good day at all, felt drained and stressed and by coincidence (or divine help) an episode like Country Girls or Christmas at Plum Creek will be on and I'll lose myself and stress to the rhythm of the Ingall's life. We all need that at times.
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bethandmanly
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sat Jul 14, 2012 11:09 pm

We talk about this issue a bit with Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman too. Except in an episode where the men were playing pranks on each other, I don't think we ever saw an outhouse in the entire town or at people's homes.

When I interviewed Dean for my blog, he talked about Michael's ideas for the show versus how he was preparing for the role. Dean read books on homesteading, but it was Laura Ingalls Wilder's version of homesteading from her children's books that was the tone Michael was going for. Yes it was tough, but some of that was glossed over so it could be shared with children. Here is a bit of my interview with Dean:

"I was trying to factor in how brutal and rugged and how desperate these people were to survive. Michael didn’t want people with dirty faces and dirty feet. He wanted food on the table. He wanted people to see a happy, positive life experience in this very rustic, simple environment. And that’s what he focused on. I think that’s what made the show so charming to people. That combined with the emotional life that he brought to it—Michael was a very emotional guy and he had a lot of emotional stories in him. This was the conduit for that place in his life where he could go to that and write about that and then he could fashion those stories to make them appropriate for our show."

I enjoyed some of the darker episodes like Plague and Blizzard that showed just how hard it was to survive back then, but I also liked the emotional side that Michael created.
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littlehouselover
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sun Jul 15, 2012 7:57 am

He did show how little money they had a times, once when he went for work after another crop being destroyed, Caroline mentioned having things in the "root cellar" (which I've never seen) and they'd be okay, but he knew they needed more. They went without things at times, shoes, slates, etc but nothing on a large scale. When Caroline got the women together to gather the wheat, that was hard work, maybe harder than they showed, but it got the point across.
As afar as being clean, well, they did show some poor folk, sweaty a lot and wearing old clothes, but I can see how the Ingall's wouldn't be this way, it was TV and they did show Charles getting pretty dirty and wearing the same clothes day after day.

The only realism I wished they put in more was the cooking, it was always done and when Caroline worked and the kids were in school, I don't know how she did it unless she just took the food home from the restaurant. (that's what I would have done) : )
I also noticed a show where Grace wasn't with her and she was walking with all the other kids to school, and then went to work,no mention of who had her?
Sometimes if something was too hard to write in, they just let it go and figured no one would notice.

I also enjoyed the Blizzard and Plague for the realism of the harshness of the times.
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sun Jul 15, 2012 3:12 pm

I think from watching the show i did get an idea of how hard life really was.It would have been nice to see how the food was made.I think the show needed the drama in it to make it instersting.Ok maybe sometimes it was a bit much.It made me thankful for the things i do have!!!


“Tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it... Yet.” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sun Jul 15, 2012 3:54 pm

I dont't really think they HAVE to mention that folks had to use the outhouse. Thats a given...they were human. As far as things being hard, crops failed and it made it hard to store food for winters that were terribly hard.
IF you want to know how hard things were read Laura's books OR even books by Maria D. Wilkes and Celia Wiklins. These books are The Caroline Years based on Laura's mothers family. Her own father was lost at sea and her mother had to harvest her garden(due to an early frost) before it was ready to be able to have anything at all that winter to eat. THESE were hard times.
Everything they had they grew, made or did without. Everyone in the family had a part in the survival of the entire family.

I think Michael Landon did a pretty good job. Remember the Blind school fire....no fire dept. was called then. Hard times for sure.




It is the lack of Christianity that has brought us where we are. Not a lack of churches or religious forms but of the real thing in our hearts. LIW.....Words From a Fearless Heart
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Praire Girl
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sun Jul 15, 2012 5:39 pm

I think the outhouse is just like a side-joke, no one wants to think about going out in the winter when it's 0 degrees and windy or if they are snowed in, the alternative. OhMy

I never saw where they stored things for the winter, was it in the soddie? I saw apples, etc. in there but not vegetables, meat, etc.
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sun Jul 15, 2012 6:41 pm

I agree gin and Praire girl!!..


“Tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it... Yet.” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Sun Jul 15, 2012 9:20 pm

Praire Girl wrote:
I never saw where they stored things for the winter, was it in the soddie? I saw apples, etc. in there but not vegetables, meat, etc.

Though we didn't see it on LHOP, they would either can the vegetables or dry them out to use later, so I guess maybe some of those canned vegetables were hiding in that cupboard in the room with the table in it. They probably also dried some of the meat too or depended upon snow to keep it cold.

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PostSubject: Re: How hard did Little House make pioneering seem?    Today at 10:17 pm

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