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Laura Ingalls Wilder presenter entertains and educates at museum event

March 18, 2018
Kevin Williams - Grundy County Conservation Director , Reinbeck Courier

I seriously doubt that many of you reading this haven't either read some of Laura Ingalls Wilder's books or watched the TV series "Little House On The Prairie" which was based on some of her books. The life and experiences of the author were presented to a packed house of visitors last Sunday at the Grundy County Heritage Museum in Morrison. Sara Uthoff became Wilder for about an hour and then answered questions about Wilder from the audience.

Uthoff is a respected authority on Laura Ingalls Wilder and it was quite evident in her presentation. The program took the audience through the many places that the family called home in Wisconsin, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota and the Dakotas and the hardships along the way.

Sunday was also the official kickoff for the museum's 2018 season although the facilities are open year around Tuesdays through Thursdays and by appointment.

There are a couple of exciting projects that I thought I would take the time to mention. One is the "kid's burrow" under development in the agricultural hall. Kids will be able to enter the underground burrow and experience what many of our furry, scaly and even a few feathered friends feel underground. Work is expected to begin this spring with new additions over the coming months.

The other exhibit beginning development will eventually showcase the American Indian artifact collection donated by the late Robert Voigt of Reinbeck. Robert was an avid collector of artifacts with some of his searching taking place along the Iowa River in Hardin County and some in Tama County around fifteen-mile grove. However, the majority of his artifacts came from Grundy County and were collected in the 1960s, 70s, and early 80s.

While there are some artifacts presently on display, the majority of his 3500 pieces are stored and awaiting the first phase of the project which is working with the Office of State Archaeologist. When all of these artifacts are cataloged and identified, a quality exhibit interpreting the items can be constructed. Phase I will begin as soon as July with the exhibit work in January, 2019.



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