When I do my travel program, one of the stories I always like to tell is how my then boss and traveling companion, Vicki Hughes urged me on despite what I’d been told in town and we discovered that the Little House was open after all. It was a private store operated as a summer and weekend project by a school teacher named Cynthia Johnson and so offered a different take on Laura Ingalls Wilder collectibles. It was located in the town of Lund, Wisconsin which is just down the road from the Wayside outside of Pepin where the replica cabin stands, you go on past the Wayside until the road Ts and then turn left. It really isn’t all that far at all (although it would be a long jaunt to walk). The church in Lund was used for part of the festivities surrounding the dedication of the original replica cabin.
The store was really a labor of love and I found several unique things there that I use in my storytelling, a good price on postcards, and some really rare stuff. She also had stuff from the Caddie Woodlawn site outside of Eau Claire which I haven’t managed to make it to yet. Very sadly Cynthia the owner developed cancer and passed away a couple of years ago. Her family was at first unsure what to do with the store and tried for a couple of years to at least keep a presence as a vendor at Laura Days, but they have officially given it up. I’m not sure what’s happened to the building because I didn’t drive by this time, but the last of the stock was sold to the Pepin Museum giftstore this year.
I’m sorry both for the passing of this lovely lady and for the future visitors who will be unable to discover her unique shop, but I wanted to make sure Laura fans marked its passing.
Sarah S. Uthoff blogs at TrundleBed Tales; look for her on Facebook and Twitter and YouTube and Blog Talk Radio
Laura Ingalls Wilder Legacy and Research Association, Vice-President and Membership Chair
So sorry to hear this—I love this store. You are right; they had some unique items.
Sorry to hear this, didn’t know about the store so missed it when we were in Pepin before LauraPalooza 2010.
How sad. We loved visiting this store. We found many items to use in our classrooms for social studies.
This was a nice little store. Sorry to hear it has closed.
This is a sad closing indeed. My very first visit to Pepin, the Wayside and the Little House Store in Lund was in 1989, and I was always charmed with her accessory collection and antiques. I’m thankful the remainders of the store have been absorbed by the Pepin Museum.
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