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November 6, 2021

18 Behind the Scenes Photos From the Making of ‘Little House on the Prairie’

For nine seasons – between 1974 and 1984 – the Ingalls family of Little House on the Prairie was the personification of wholesome family values. The story of a 19th century family settling in the old American West was based on children’s novels. And it gave viewers a look at life on a farm during simpler times.

Filming of the pilot and the series that followed took place not in the Midwestern town of Walnut Grove, Minnesota but in the far West – Simi Valley, California, and the Warner Brothers studios in Burbank. The final episode featured the town’s buildings being blown up to thwart a railroad baron. The plot was created to facilitate the removal of the set at as low a cost as possible. Guest stars included Ernest Borgnine, Johnny Cash and Burl Ives.

Today, the Little House books are not without controversy for their racially charged references to Native Americans and African Americans. But in the 1970s, the debate about the books’ intentions was far in the future.

(Photos: Ted Shepherd/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty Images)


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