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The Little House Encyclopedia
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Characters A-E

  • Adams, Judge Henry

(played by John Zaremba)

Judge of the Minnesota County Seat for many decades, often presiding over small claims court cases like the legendary "Mr. Mills Land Swindle Scandal" and sometimes officiating adoptions for people like Albert Quinn Ingalls.

first appearance: "The Family Tree" last appearance: "Blind Justice"

  • Alden, Rev. Robert

(played by Dabbs Greer)

Walnut Grove's most respected man of God didn't start out to be that way. Once an ordinary citizen of Walnut Grove, his life changed dramatically in his 30's when a major disaster killed his entire family. Totally distraught, he turned to drinking. During his binge, he was said to have "heard God's voice". It was only then that Alden knew God had work for him to do, and in 1860 he decided to become a minister for the Lord. Six years later he founded the Walnut Grove church, thus becoming a more loving and kind person. In 1877 he found true love again as he married the widow Anna Craig, but she died shortly after. But Rev. Alden would not let another tragedy keep him from the path of God. His ministry in Walnut Grove ended when the town was destroyed in 1901.

first appearance: "A Harvest Of Friends" last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

  • Annabelle

(played by Harriett Gibson)

Sister of Nels Oleson who joined London's circus in the 1870s. Annabelle was so ridiculed by her brother because of her tremendous weight that she ran away from home and joined London's Circus. There, she was met by people who were able to accept her for what she was. When London's Circus made its rounds to Walnut Grove, she happened to cross paths with her brother Nels, but he had not changed one bit. When Annabelle finally struck back at Nels by ridiculing him, it was only then that her brother finally accepted her for what she was, and one night during a performance Annabelle and Nels reconciled. Annabelle remained with London's Circus for many decades until she passed away in 1914.

appearance: "Annabelle"

  • Applewood, Hannibal

(played by Richard Basehart)

Substitute teacher who came to Walnut Grove briefly in 1871. "Crab-Applewood", as most of his former students called him, was a very strict teacher who was very hard to handle. He taught at many different schools, each job not lasting very long. In 1871, he was assigned by the Walnut Grove council the job vacated briefly by Miss Beadle. Taking advantage of some of his "tough-love" methods, Mr. Applewood was set up by Harriet Oleson so he would make sure he would torment as much as possible Miss Beadle's "pet student", Laura Ingalls, so far as to suspend her for an incident she did not cause. When Charles Ingalls found out the truth behind Laura's "punishment", he (and the rest of the council) banned Mr. Applewood from ever teaching in Walnut Grove again. Mr. Applewood died of a massive stroke some time later.

appearance: "Troublemaker"

  • Baker, Harry

(played by Jimmy McNichol)

Nephew of Dr. Hiram Baker and student of Walnut Grove school in 1870. He later disappeared and was never heard from again.

first appearance: "The Love Of Johnny Johnson"

  • Baker, Dr. Hiram

(played by Kevin Hagen)

One of the most respected country doctors. For nearly 30 years, he was the physician of Walnut Grove, aiding everyone (and everything) from human beings to even farm animals. By 1885 his work load had become so huge that he decided to take on an assistant. He never counted on getting a black doctor. At first, his own feelings of prejudice made him jealous, but when he discovered the black doctor, Gaston LeDoux, obtained skills Hiram never had, he had a change of heart and took on Dr. LeDoux as an assistant-at-large until the town was destroyed in 1901. Dr. Baker has never been married.

first appearance: "A Harvest Of Friends" last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

  • Bates, Lou

(played by Billy Barty)

Midget-sized circus performer and banker. Once a member of a nationwide circus troupe, he left after his wife died giving birth to a baby daughter. Desperate for money to support his family, he decided to find work as a banker in Walnut Grove. But "Little Lou" (as he was called) was set up by Harriet Oleson so that he would not obtain the job because of his size. Disgraced, he decided to steal from the mercantile to support his family, and he was detained in the ice house for his actions. But he redeemed himself when he saved the life of Harriet's daughter Nancy from a well. Because of the size of the well, only Lou could rescue her. Seeing that she was wrong, Harriet apologized and recommended Lou to the bank, and there he stayed for several years.

appearance: "Little Lou"

  • Beadle-Simms, Eva

(played by Charlotte Stewart)

Kindergarten teacher in Walnut Grove until 1875. Beloved by all her students who knew her well, especially Laura Ingalls. Miss Beadle nearly gave up teaching altogether after an incident involving two older students, but still she was able to carry out her job in the best loving way she knew how. In 1874 she met and married a widow named Adam Simms, and they had one child together, Matthew Adam, a short time later. She left Walnut Grove a year later after Mary Ingalls became blind, but not without taking with her fond memories of the school and students she cherished.

first appearance: "Country Girls" last appearance: "I'll Be Waving As You Drive Away"

  • Blanche

(played by Strawberry the ape)

Orangutan who ran amok throughout Walnut Grove (and nearly done in by Nancy Oleson and authorities) in 1889.

appearance: "For The Love Of Blanche"

  • Brown, Harrison

(played by Jack Ging)

Father of Rachel Brown-Oleson and father-in-law of Wille Oleson. His wife Rachelle died during the Great Tornado of 1886, but he always had a simple dream for his only child, Rachel...just to be happy. So three years later, in 1889, he allowed Willie Oleson to marry her with absolutely no regrets. Years later, he moved to Bur Oak, Iowa where he replaced Charles Ingalls as manager of Janes & Son.

appearance: "May I Have This Dance?"

  • Brown-Oleson, Rachel

(played by Sherri Stoner)

Rachel was just a homely country girl who was quickly swept off her feet by Willie Oleson during his Senior year in school. They quickly fell in love, and in 1889 (just after Willie's graduation) they were married...despite objections from Willie's mother, Harriet!!! Rachel had no children.

first appearance: "May I Have This Dance?" last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

  • Bunny

(played by Bunny the horse)

Horse that ran in the Horse Race Championship in 1872. Laura Ingalls originally owned the horse, but when Nellie Oleson wanted to buy the horse but couldn't, Laura made a deal to sell the horse to Nels Oleson to give to Nellie as a gift at Christmas of 1870 in exchange for a stove. Later, Laura became upset at the way Nellie treated her horse, and in jealousy Nellie took her horse, and in riding Bunny crashed into a tree. Fearing the horse would be destroyed for causing the accident, Laura stole Bunny back and hid her in a barn. When Nellie's feigned illness became known, the Olesons punished Nellie by returning Bunny to its original owner. Some time later, Laura entered Bunny in the annual horse race championship and won first prize. Months later, Bunny got into a freak accident when Laura ran her beloved horse into a barbed wire fence which she did not see in time. Because of its injuries, Bunny had to be shot to death by Charles Ingalls.

first appearance: "Christmas At Plum Creek" last appearance: "Journey In The Spring"

  • Burke, Dr. John

(played by Ford Rainey)

Optometrist who helped prescribe Mary Ingalls' reading glasses, and who would later diagnose Mary's blindness.

first appearance: "Four Eyes" last appearance: "I'll Be Waving As You Drive Away"

  • Carter, Jason Reed

(played by David Friedman)

Younger son of Sarah & John Carter. Born in 1876, Jason was always considered the smart but curious member of the Carter family. Jason has claimed he wore glasses just so he can be the smartest one in his class.

first appearance: "Times Are Changing" last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

  • Carter, Jebiddiah Reed ("Jeb")

(played by Lindsay Kennedy)

Oldest son of Sarah & John Carter. Born in 1873, Jeb didn't always approve of his younger brother, but he did have a knack for swimming and fishing. Aside from his schooling, he took an afterschool job being caretaker for Linda McAndrews until she was driven from Walnut Grove by Jeb's own grandfather. Jeb received high honors in school.

first appearance: "Times Are Changing" last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

  • Carter, John

(played by Stan Ivar)

Renowned blacksmith who once lived in the big city until he met and married Sarah Reed. Years after having their two sons, John felt life would be better for the family in the plains of Walnut Grove. He eventually took over the blacksmith job held vacant for eight years after the disappearance of Irv Hartwig. He and the family were very happy until they learned about the impending destruction of Walnut Grove. Shortly after, they moved back to the big city.

first appearance: "Times Are Changing" last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

  • Carter, Sarah Reed

(played by Pamela Roylance)

The daughter of a wealthy businessman, Elliot Reed, Sarah did not want to be a shadow of her overbearing father. So she decided to start a new life away from the big city. She met and married John Carter, a blacksmith, and years later in 1887 moved to Walnut Grove in the little house formerly owned by the Ingalls. Once she moved in, she started a town newspaper called "The Walnut Grove Gazette". The Carters have two sons, Jeb and Jason.

first appearance: "Times Are Changing" last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

  • Case, Mr.

(played by Ivan Bonar)

Physician and social worker in Mankato who handled the adoption of Nancy to the Olesons.

  • Cassidy, Tom

(played by Bill Zuckert)

One of the men who worked rock-blasting jobs during a crucial assignment in 1870.

appearance: "100 Mile Walk"

  • Cohen, Benjamin

(played by B.M. Margolese)

Father of Issac Cohen (alias Percival Dalton). Born in Jerusalem, Benjamin Cohen lived strictly by Jewish law, even when he came into the United States. He would go into fits of anger whenever people criticized his beliefs...so much that he suffered from heart problems. He would not accept his son's marriage to a Gentile (Nellie Oleson), nor the coming birth of his children until the Olesons compromised with Benjamin that if the child were a boy, he would be raised a Jew, or if the child were a girl, she would be raised a full Christian. When it turned out he had twin grandchildren, Benjamin finally accepted the Olesons' differences. He died in 1885 in New York due to a heart attack.

appearance: "Come, Let Us Reason Together"

  • Cohen, Edna

(played by Bea Silvern)

Mother of Issac Cohen (alias Percival Dalton). Born Edna Chaimian in Israel, came to the United States when she was a child. She met and married Benjamin Cohen in 1860. Edna was always alert to her husband's anger due to his disagreements with the American way of life. She ran a business which was passed over to his son Issac upon the death of her husband in 1885.

appearance: "Come, Let Us Reason Together"

  • Cohen, Benjamin Oleson Dalton

Twin son of Nellie Oleson and Percival Dalton, nicknamed Benny.

mentioned in "Come, Let Us Reason Together"


  • Cohen, Jennifer Oleson Dalton

Twin daughter of Nellie Oleson and Percival Dalton, nicknamed Jenny.

mentioned in "Come, Let Us Reason Together"

  • Cohen, Issac

(played by Steve Tracy)

Raised a Jew, Issac knew that one day he would escape his family tradition and create a life for himself. To that end, he changed his name to Percival Dalton, and in 1876 he met Nellie Oleson, who had just opened up a restaurant. Swept away by her charms (or lack thereof), he fell in love with Nellie and eventually married her several weeks later and stayed in Walnut Grove to live. Then, in 1885, Percival's father Bemjamin passed away, so feeling it was up to him to keep his father's business alive for the sake of the family, Percival, Nellie, and their two kids, Jenny and Benny, moved to New York permanently. Percival died many years later.

first appearance: "Loves Me, Loves Me Not" last appearance: "Come, Let Us Reason Together"

  • Cooper, James

(played by Jason Bateman)

Cooper, Cassandra (played by Missy Francis)

Two orphaned children adopted by the Ingalls. When their real parents were killed in a freak accident in 1885, Charles Ingalls was left responsible for finding the children a new home. He originally took them in for a short period of time until the Tompkin family offered to adopt them. Even Charles was unaware of the rough treatment the Cooper children received, so eventually he decided to take them in permanently...despite the small residence. The Ingalls came to accept them as their own children.

first appearance: "The Lost Ones" last appearance: "He Was Only Twelve"

  • Cooper, Jed

(played by E.J. Andre)

Grand-uncle to James and Cassandra Cooper. Once wealthy, his wife died of a mysterious illness, rendering him nearly penniless and forced to live out in the wilderness while trying to find work. After his nephew died, Jed was offered care for James and Cassandra, but declined. Then suddenly he became wealthy again and came to Walnut Grove to gain custody of the Cooper children from the Ingalls (from whom the children were eventually adopted). He successfully won, but came down with tuberculosis. Dr. Baker suggested the only way Jed was going to survive was to move out West where the climate was warm and dry, so custody of the Cooper children reverted back to the Ingalls. Though sad to lose the children, Jed's love for them never ended.

first appearance: "The Lost Ones" last appearance: "Uncle Jed"


  • Craig-Alden, Anna

(played by Iris Korn)

Widowed lady and faithful church member who fell in love with (and eventually married) Rev. Alden in 1877. The marriage, however, didn't last very long as she passed away from the annual plague some years later.

appearance: "The Preacher Takes A Wife"


  • Crowley, Dick

(played by Alvy Moore)

Landlord and owner of the General Store in Sleepy Eye for which Almanzo Wilder worked for a time during the re-establishment of the Blind School.

appearance: "He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not"

  • Danforth, Rev. Edward

(played by James Olson)

So-called "faith healer" banished out of God's service by Charles Ingalls. Danforth was one of the "traveling preachers" who rode the circuit during the mid 1880's. He claimed to have brought miracles and healed people "in Thy name". In 1876 a member of Danforth's congregation brought his son to be healed against the orders of Dr. Hiram Baker. The son died as a result. When the truth about the tragedy, and that Danforth was taking members of the Walnut Grove church away from Rev. Alden to join the "faith ministry", was exposed by Charles Ingalls, the Rev. "faith healer" was banished from Walnut Grove and defrocked from his ministry. Weeks later, Rev. Danforth took a gun to his head and killed himself.

appearance: "The Faith Healer"

  • Dorfler, Hans

(played by Jim Jeter)

Respected blacksmith in Walnut Grove from 1870 until his death in 1885. He was instrumental in building the horseshoes that won Laura Ingalls and her horse Bunny the Horse Race Championship in 1871.

first appearance: "A Harvest Of Friends" last appearance: "The Third Miracle"

  • Downey, Ann Christine

One of the blind students who lived in several Blind Schools in Mankato and Sleepy Eye before the state took control in 1885.

appearance: "He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not"

  • Edwards, Alicia

(played by Kyle Richards)

Youngest child of the Sanderson family. When her mother died in 1871, she was taken in and eventually adopted by Isaiah and Grace Snider Edwards upon their wedding day.

first appearance: "Remember Me" last appearance: "A Promise To Keep"

  • Edwards Jr., John

(played by Ramares Pera)

Oldest child of the Sanderson family. After his mother died in 1871, he was subsequently adopted by the Edwards family. For a time, he had a crush on the oldest Ingalls daughter, Mary. But when Mary discovered he was a womanizer, they broke off their engagement. John Jr. was murdered on the streets of Chicago in 1885.

first appearance: "Remember Me" last appearance: "Times Of Change"

  • Edwards, Grace Snider

(played by Bonnie Bartlett & Corinne Michaels)

Once a widowed lady, she married Isaiah Edwards because she wanted to once again find true happiness in her life. She also adopted three children from the Sanderson family shortly after their mother died. A very loving mother and wife, she eventually fell victim to Mr. Edwards' old drinking habits, so a year after John Jr.'s death in 1886, she divorced him and married Nathan Simms (Adam's brother and Mrs. Beadle-Simms' brother-in-law).

first appearance: "Mr. Edwards' Homecoming" last appearance: "A Promise To Keep"

  • Edwards, Isaiah

(played by Victor French)

Close friend to the Ingalls family. Once married, he lost his entire immediate family to the pox, and soon after became a drunk and a vagrant. He first stumbled upon the Ingalls family in the year 1869 while they were establishing a home on the Kansas prairies. He taught the Ingalls many things, even teaching Laura how to spit! Eventually he followed the Ingalls to their new home in Walnut Grove, but his occasional drinking got in the way. He sobered up when he met a widow named Grace Snider, eventually winning over her and marrying her, as well as adopting three kids from the Sanderson family (John Jr., Alicia, and Karl). Though there were times he fell on the wayside, the Ingalls family (as well as his own) would help him out. Then, in 1885, his adopted son John Jr. was murdered on the streets of Chicago, and fell back into alcoholism, which cost him his marriage, his family, and nearly his well-being. It took becoming godfather to Laura's baby Rose, his conversion to Christianity, and his eventual moving in with the Wilder family to bring him back again.

first appearance: Original movie last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

Characters F-K

  • Fagin

(played by Fagin the calf)

Calf purchased by Charles Ingalls for his newly adopted son Albert to raise. It eventually won first prize at the county fair.

appearance: "Fagin"


  • Faraday, Connie

(played by Terry Lumley)

One of the women who helped Caroline Ingalls while Charles was on a job in 1870.

appearance: "100 Mile Walk"


  • Fisher, Caleb

(played by John McLiam)

Hard-working but domineering farmer and faithful follower of the ways of Mrs. Peal, a hateful elderly woman, who has passed her superstitious and inaccurate biblical teachings on to her community. He is married to Ellen; together they have a young daughter, Katie. Mary Ingalls stayed with the family during her first teaching assignment, but Caleb was just about as hateful to her as Mrs. Peal (e.g., he thought she was lying when she told other members of his family about the telephone). Eventually, he saw the errors of his ways when Mary exposed Mrs. Peal's secret that she is illiterate.

appearance: "Whisper Country"


  • Fisher, Ellen

(played by Dee Croxton)

Submissive housewife to Caleb Fisher, who together have a daughter, Katie; they live outside a rural community controlled by Mrs. Peal, a hateful but illiterate woman known for her superstitious beliefs. Mary Ingalls stayed with the Fishers during her hellacious teaching assignment there. Ellen proudly supported Mary when Mary decided to stand up to Mrs. Peal.

appearance: "Whisper Country"


  • Fisher, Katie

(played by Linda McMillan)

Introspective girl, about 7 or 8 years old, the daughter and only child of Caleb and Ellen Fisher. Mary stayed with the family during her first teaching assignment in a backwoods community, controlled by a superstitious, elderly woman who was illiterate. Mary helped Katie come out of her shell, but still feared her father's domineering ways.

appearance: "Whisper Country"


  • Flanery, Mae

(played by Barbara Townsend)

Mrs. Flanery owned a two-story mansion on the outskirts of Walnut Grove. A widowed lady whose husband and only child died years earlier, her one wish was to see someone inherit the house as the Bed-and-Breakfast Inn it was built for. In 1889, on her deathbed, she willed the Inn to her caretaker, Laura Ingalls Wilder.

appearance: "May I Have This Dance?"


  • Forbes, Colonel Arthur

(played by Roger Torrey)

Member of the U.S. Calvary who oversaw the final evacuation of Walnut Grove when Nathan Lassiter took control of the town in 1901.

appearance: "The Last Farewell"

  • Foster, Ruth

(played by herself)

Messenger/postmaster who kept the mail and made sure the messages were sent to the citizens of Walnut Grove.

first appearance: "Country Girls" last appearance: "The Last Farewell"

A footnote: Ruth Foster is the only actress in the entire cast to play herself and not a fictitious-named character.

  • Fred

(played by Fred the goat)

Mischievous goat who wrecked havoc on the citizens of Walnut Grove in 1872. Laura Ingalls found the animal in the fields of Plum Creek. By that time he had already been kicked out by his owner. During his time in Walnut Grove "friendly Fred" nearly injured Rev. Alden, made a mess out of Harriet Oleson's nice dress, and drank all of the alcoholic potion Mr. Edwards had made! Finally, Laura Ingalls had to let the goat go and spend the rest of his life "with his own kind", out in the pastures of Plum Creek, right where she found him.

appearance: "Fred"

  • Garvey, Alice

(played by Hersha Parady)

Late wife of Jonathan Garvey. Married once to a saloon owner, Alice met Jonathan Garvey in 1860 and soon married him. They came to Walnut Grove 15 years later when the town went broke. Alice was a gifted schoolteacher who used just about every method in the book to get her students (including her own son Andy) to learn. She also lent a helping hand to the Ingalls during their stay in Winoka, and at the Blind School when the entourage returned to Walnut Grove. She was killed in late 1876 in a fire at the Oleson Blind School outside Mankato.

first appearance: "The Wolves" last appearance: "May We Make Them Proud"


  • Garvey, Andrew ("Andy")

(played by Patrick Laborteaux)

Son of Jonathan and Alice Garvey. Andy was a very difficult student in school who always had trouble with studying. When his parents assigned Nellie Oleson to tutor him, things just got worse. Naturally, it took the love of Andy's parents to straighten him out. In 1885, nine years after his mother died, he moved to Sleepy Eye to help his father with his new business venture.

first appearance: "The Wolves" last appearance: "The Lost Ones"


  • Garvey, Jonathan

(played by Merlin Olsen)

Hard-working man who came to Walnut Grove in 1875 to assist the Ingalls during the town's hardships. Like Isaiah Edwards, he was one of Walnut Grove's finest lumber men. He was married for 16 years to Alice, and had one son, Andy. After his wife's death in a fire in 1876, Jonathan and Andy struggled hard for nearly nine years without Alice, but to no avail. He would later move to Sleepy Eye and start a business venture of his own.

first appearance: "Castoffs" last appearance: "The Lost Ones"


  • Godfrey, Hannibal

(played by George Furth)

Businessman who sold the Olseons the infamous Edison "talking machine" that would wreck havoc in Laura Ingalls' life.

appearance: "The Talking Machine"


  • Goodspeed, Susan

(played by Michelle Downey)

Blind student who lived and was cared for in several Blind Schools in Mankato and Sleepy Eye. She was particularly fond of her teacher, Mary Ingalls Kendall, before the State took control of the Sleepy Eye School in 1885.

last appearance: "Look Back To Yesterday"


  • Gray, Matt

(played by Chris Shaffer)

Land swindler and con artist who sold Almanzo Wilder land near the hills of Plum Creek (prior to Wilder's marriage to Laura Ingalls). Almanzo bought the land from Gray on the pretense that it would yield crops, but it turned out to be no more than dry land. Gray was later booted off by Wilder's future father-in-law Charles Ingalls.

appearance: "Laura Ingalls Wilder"


  • Guffey, Major

(played by Laurie Main)

Owner and operator of Mrs. Sullivan's restaurant. In 1885, Major convinced Harriet Oleson that her restaurant could make more money if he assumed ownership of it. Unfortunately, it did not sit well with her and Major revoked her license to operate under Mrs. Sullivan's franchise.

appearance: "Wave Of The Future"

  • Hale, Braden

(played by Dennis Howard)

Father of Gideon Hale. Braden and his wife Lydeon moved to near Walnut Grove in order to help their studdering son get an education. When his son was ridiculed by his classmates, Braden became an overprotective father, but it was their new pet dog that made him change his ways about the people surrounding his son.

appearance: "No Beast So Fierce"


  • Hale, Gideon

(played by Peter Billingsley)

Son of Braden and Lydeon Hale. He was an autistic child with developmental problems which caused him to studder. The Hale family moved from town to town to try to escape the ridicule of those around them. When Gideon entered Walnut Grove school, he was teased by classmate James Cooper, which caused the young boy to run away. It was Caroline Ingalls who touched his life by seeing the error of the world's ways. When Caroline told Gideon's father what James had done, the family forbade James to see the boy, but thanks to a stray pet that had hung around the Ingalls, the Hales gave Gideon a second chance to make friends. Gideon was killed in the Great Tornado of 1886.

appearance: "No Beast So Fierce"


  • Hale, Lydeon

(played by Jennifer Rhodes)

Wife of Braden and mother of Gideon Hale.

appearance: "No Beast So Fierce"


  • Hanson, Lars

(played by Karl Swenson)

Founder and former mayor of Walnut Grove. Born in Sweden in 1810, he immigrated to the U.S. in 1835 to found a town that would reflect the entire community, not just one person. He wanted to name the Minnesota town "Hansonville", but after seeing that it took many people to build a town, he decided to name it "Walnut Grove". He stayed as mayor of the town and served his citizens well until the town went bankrupt in early 1875. Devastated by this, he suffered a massive stroke. During his recovery, he gave up on himself until he finally decided to accept the town's fate and thus took it upon himself to reconcile with the town once it got back on his feet. He passed away in October of 1875 due to continuing complications from his stroke. But Lars Hanson will always be regarded as the person who brought a town together through crisis and turmoil.

first appearance: "A Harvest Of Friends" last appearance: "There's No Place Like Home"


  • Harlan, Dixon

(played by Cletus Young)

Henchman to Miles Standish. He served as Standish's right-hand man in Winoka until the day he tried to rape young Mary Ingalls. Charles came to her daughter's rescue before Harlan could do anything, and in return he was beaten by Harlan. In retaliation, Jonathan Garvey gave Harlan his good riddance and thus was never heard from again.

appearance: "As Long As We're Together"


  • Harrison, Dewey

(played by Eric Christmas)

Boyfriend and companion of Ruthy Leland. After Ruthy's husband died during the Civil War, Dewey began working for the widow and became companion and housekeeper. Dewey worked with Charles Ingalls for many months during the "Year Of The Drought" in the mid-1870s, and later assisted a young worker, Jason Carter, in tidying up the house for the summer. When Ruthy died, Dewey sold the summer house in Walnut Grove and spent the final ten years of his life in Bur Oak, Iowa.

appearance: "The Last Summer"


  • Hartwig, Irv

(played by Richard Jaeckel)

Blacksmith and child molester. Hartwig was one of Walnut Grove's most respected blacksmith for many years. But during his career he hid his true identity...Hartwig was a known sexual abuser, and wanted in several states for many of his crimes. In 1877, he raped a young 15-year-old girl named Sylvia Webb and impregnantated her. He cleverly disguised himself so that no one knew it was him who did the crime. As the weeks passed, he hired a 17-year-old boy named Albert Ingalls (to whom Sylvia was engaged). Continuing to stalk Sylvia, Albert unwittingly told Hartwig where to find her, tracking her down to an old abandonded house miles from Walnut Grove. When Hartwig finally found her, he chased the frightened youngster up a ladder, causing her to fall and fatally injuring her. He was then shot by Sylvia's father, R. Webb, but Hartwig mysteriously vanished from sight. Many citizens have presumed he collapsed and died later on, while others have presumed he fled to Mexico. In any case, his body has never been found.

appearance: "Sylvia"


  • Hartwig, Rev. John

(played by Edmund Stoiber)

Father of Irv Hartwig. John was an ordained minister who was in charge of the wedding of Laura Ingalls and Almanzo Wilder.

appearance: "Laura Ingalls Wilder"


  • Haynes, Dr. Marvin

(played by Ralph Bellamy)

One of the last of the "old time" country doctors who practiced outside of Walnut Grove for many decades. When old age started to wear him down, he felt it was time to retire...but not before he took in one last patient, Jenny Wilder, who had suffered minor brain damage after a near drowning accident. Dr. Haynes was able to nurse the little girl back to health, and with that his task as a doctor was finished. He would be forever proud of what he did for both Jenny and his patients.

appearance: "Marvin's Garden"


  • Henry, Solomon

(played by Todd Bridges)

A strange boy from the South who briefly ran away from home to seek a proper education. Solomon was the son of two hard workers who labored hard to support their child. But Solomon was also a petty thief. When his parents discovered what he had done, Solomon ran away from home, eventually catching up with the Ingalls on route to Walnut Grove. The Ingalls took him in while Solomon was enrolled in the Walnut Grove School. With the help of Laura Ingalls, he finally overcame his bad habits and returned home back to his parents a changed person.

appearance: "The Wisdom Of Solomon"


  • Hodgekiss, Caleb

(played by Johnny Cash)

Down-on-his-luck con man who for many years posed as a minister to steal from the rich townsfolk. One day, in Rev. Alden's absence, he was given the task of collecting funds to save the church, but kept the money for himself. It was left to the recovering Alden to finally set Caleb straight.

appearance: "The Collection"

  • Hodgekiss, Mattie

(played by June Carter Cash)

Wife of Caleb Hodgekiss who helped her husband see straight after he embezzled church funds to save his family.

appearance: "The Collection"

  • Houser, Dr. Mitchell

(played by James T. Callahan)

Doctor who diagnosed Albert Ingalls' near-fatal blood disease. When Albert became ill in 1892, Dr. Houser conducted blood tests that confirmed Albert had a then-unknown blood disease that he believed to be fatal. When Albert miraculosly recovered, Dr. Houser was left stunned, dumbfounded that for the first time in his career he was wrong about his practice. It is not known whether or not he quit his job as a doctor.

appearance: "Look Back To Yesterday"

  • Hungry

(played by Hungry the cat)

Feline who constantly hung around the Wilders during the Great Tornado of 1886 which struck Walnut Grove.

appearance: "Days Of Sunshine, Days Of Shadow"

  • Ingalls, Albert Quinn

(played by Matthew Labourteaux)

Adopted son of Charles and Caroline Ingalls. His real father was Jeremy Quinn, who eventually disowned his son. Albert went to live in several orphanages and hostels before he escaped into Winoka as a homeless boy. In 1875, during an Ingalls family crisis, Laura discovered Albert living beneath buildings, making his living off of shoeshine money. Feeling sorry for him, Laura eventually introduced him to the Ingalls and took him in on the condition that he find a good education. Eventually Albert became accepted as the Ingalls' son, and wished to be adopted. But some months later the court tracked down Albert's real father, Jeremy. When Jeremy eventually saw that his real son would be much happier with the Ingalls than continue to grow up as he was before (by way of a ruse in which Albert faked being blind), he reluctantly signed over custody of Albert to the Ingalls, and thus forever after carried the Ingalls name. But with it came the tragedies of family life. First, in 1876, he partially caused a fire at the Blind School killing his own nephew, Adam Jr. (Mary's son). Then, a year later, he lost his classmate and young fiance to whom he was engaged, Sylvia Webb, to the murderous maneuvers of blacksmith Irv Hartwig. Then, in 1888 while living in Bur Oak, Iowa, he fell into morphine addiction. With the help of Charles Ingalls, he was able to kick his habit. It was after that experience that Albert began his studies to fulfill a life-long dream...to become a doctor. He had wanted to become a doctor ever since the Ingalls adopted him. But it almost came at a price. In 1892, while returning to Walnut Grove for a visit, he began to suffer uncontrollable nosebleeds. This led his adopted father Charles and Mr. Edwards to seek medical help for him. After tests, physicians found he had contracted a rare blood disease that was said to be fatal. Albert was on the brink of death, but thanks to his own self-determination and unending faith in God, he miraclously and courageously overcame his disease. After leaving Walnut Grove, Albert returned to Bur Oak to resume his studies and earned a Masters' degree in medicine. In 1899, he made a return visit to Walnut Grove for the last time as Dr. Albert Ingalls. He did not return there again as it was destroyed in 1901. He has not been heard from since then. There are rumors that Albert died before Walnut Grove's destruction, while others have claimed he moved to Mexico to set up his practice. His whereabouts remain unknown.

first appearance: "As Long As We're Together" last appearance: "Look Back To Yesterday"


  • Ingalls, Caroline Quiner Holbrook

(played by Karen Grassle)

Caroline was a loving mother to eight children (five natural {one of which is now deceased}, and three adopted). Caroline never knew her real father very well, but did have an almost un-easy relationship with her stepfather whose last name was Holbrook. Eventually, she made peace with him before he died in 1884. When Caroline was 18, she married the man of her dreams...Charles Ingalls. They first lived in the Big Woods, then the prairies of Kansas, but when the government moved in, they found a new, permanent home in Walnut Grove, Minnesota. By that time she already had three children, all girls. But her greatest desire was to have a boy. In 1870, she gave birth to Charles Frederick Ingalls. But the newborn contracted a rare blood disease and quickly passed away. Although it would devastate her for many years, she remained a lady with a strong will, and that allowed her to give birth to her final natural child, Grace Holbrook Ingalls, in 1874. When Walnut Grove went bankrupt a year later after her daughter Mary became blind, she naturally went with the family, eventually to find work in downtown Winoka. But when luck finally hit the Ingalls, they returned to Walnut Grove and normal small town life. But she would later become bored with being just an ordinary housewife with nothing to do, so in 1876 she took on a job at Nellie's Restaurant, eventually to carry her name in order to build up profits. Her down-to-earth style home cooking would become a top attraction in Walnut Grove, until the family (including her three adopted children, Albert, James, and Cassandra), had to move to Bur Oak, Iowa. She later returned to Walnut Grove in 1901 to see her beloved town destroyed. Caroline was also a schoolteacher prior to her marriage to Charles (she was able to apply her teaching skills as a substitute teacher during her time in Walnut Grove), which may have helped her successfully raise her children. She was also a member of the Walnut Grove Church Comittee.

first appearance: Original movie last appearance: "The Last Farewell"


  • Ingalls, Caroline Celesta ("Carrie")

(played by Lindsay Sidney Greenbush)

One of three daughters of Charles and Caroline Ingalls, born in 1863. She was at times mischievious, but a very loving child. Not much is known about her, except she did get a good education.

first appearance: Original movie last appearance: "He Was Only Twelve"


  • Ingalls, Charles Frederick

Infant son of Charles and Caroline Ingalls. He was born in the spring of 1870, but weeks after his birth he developed a rare blood disorder (similar to that which almost killed Albert Quinn Ingalls). He died shortly after.

appearance: "The Lord Is My Shepard"

  • Ingalls, Frederick Charles Phillip

(played by Michael Landon)

Charles, or "Pa" (as affectionately called) was a hard-working man who would do absolutely anything to support his family no matter what it cost him. Born in 1834, Charles was the son of Lansford and Laura Colby Ingalls. Growing up in the Big Woods was not so hard for Charles, for he found living almost luxurious for its location. In 1854 he met a young lady named Caroline Quiner. Almost swept by her charms, he climbed up a trellis to Caroline's second story bedroom window to propose to her. They were married soon after. He had five natural children, Laura Elizabeth, Mary Caroline, Carrie Quiner, Charles Frederick (who died after birth), and Grace Holbrook Ingalls. He later adopted Albert Quinn, and James & Cassandra Cooper. After moving from the Big Woods to the prairies of Walnut Grove, Minnesota, in 1870, he had no problem adjusting to life, for he knew whenever a crisis occurred, such as weather disasters and other momentary predictaments, Charles would go to great lengths to find work, even it it was 100 miles away. He held a regular job as a lumberjack in an old factory eventually owned by Isiah Edwards, whom he first befriended in 1869 while living in the prairies of Kansas. His Christian beliefs (as well as his sometimes "toughlove" attitude) would help to keep the family together throughout their stay in Walnut Grove...though it was almost short-lived. When Walnut Grove went bankrupt in 1875, he and the family moved to Winoka, but later returned to Walnut Grove as quickly as they had left. Then, in 1887, knowing he could no longer support his ever-growing family in a small town, he and the Ingalls moved to Bur Oak, Iowa and found work as a tailor, and eventually as a sales representative. Charles returned to Walnut Grove on occasion, twice to help his adopted son Albert through morphine addiction and a near-fatal illness, and for the last time in 1901 when the town was destroyed. Through it all, Charles remained a fighter and hard worker while remaining a loyal friend, father, and husband to the Ingalls family.

first appearance: Original movie last appearance: "The Last Farewell"


  • Ingalls, Grace Holbrook

(played by Wendi & Brenda Turnbaugh)

Youngest natural child of Charles and Caroline Ingalls.

first appearance: "A Most Precious Gift" last appearance: "He Was Only Twelve"


  • Ingalls, Lansford

(played by Arthur Hill)

Father of Charles Ingalls. When his wife, Laura Colby, died in 1872, he came to Walnut Grove a very bitter and distraught man. But when he won the love of his granddaughter Laura Ingalls, he changed his ways and remained in Walnut Grove longer than he planned to stay. By the time he finally returned home months later, he was a very happy man. It is not known when he died.

appearance: "Journey In The Spring"


  • Ingalls, Laura Colby

Wife of Lansford Ingalls who died in 1872 following a brief illness. Granddaughter Laura Ingalls Wilder was named after her.

appearance: "Journey In The Spring"


  • Ingalls, Mary Caroline

See Mary Ingalls Kendall.


  • Ingalls, Peter

(played by Mark Lenard)

Brother of Charles Ingalls, and son of Lansford & Laura Colby Ingalls. At times Peter disapproved of Charles and his father, but eventually came to an understanding.

appearance: "Journey In The Spring"

  • Jacobson, Elvira

(played by Eve Brent)

One of the women who helped Caroline Ingalls while Charles was away on a job in 1870.

appearance: "100 Mile Walk"


  • Jacobson, Jacob

(played by Richard Hurst)

Husband of Elvira Jacobson, uncle of Sven Jacobson. Jacob was one of Charles Ingalls' quarry partners during one of Charles' many temporary paying jobs.

appearance: "100 Mile Walk"


  • Jacobson, Sven

(played by Sean Kelly)

Nephew of Jacob and Elvira Jacobson. He was one of Walnut Grove School's bullies during Hannibal Applewood's brief stint as teacher while Miss Beadle was absent.

appearance: "Troublemaker"


  • Janes, Charles

(played by Charles Tyner)

Owner of "Janes & Son", a clothing store in Bur Oak, Iowa. He inheirited the business from his late father, Michael Janes, in order to keep the franchise alive in the family. Mr. Janes hired Charles Ingalls as manager/assistant, but would not allow family to interfere with work. When a family emergency involving Albert Ingalls developed, Charles left to answer the call, but Mr. Janes was forced to fire him. Later, Janes replaced his associate with Harrison Brown, Rachel's father.

appearance: "Home Again"


  • Jensen, Jonathan

(played by Ernest Borgnine)

Man who saved the life of Laura Ingalls in 1870. Actually, he was not a real person but an apparition of a man who once settled in Walnut Grove years before. The apparition was sent by God to take the form of a human being in order to help Laura Ingalls cope with the grief over the loss of her baby brother Charles Frederick. Jonathan settled upon a huge mountain (known to many as "Jonathan's Mountain") and found Laura sleeping. Laura sought "his" help in sending a signal to God to return the baby Charles in exchange for Laura. While caring for the little girl, the angel constructed a personalized cross for Laura. When Laura lost her cross, Jonathan helped her build a fire that could be seen for miles. Laura and Jonathan prayed that God would answer the girl's request. The prayer was answered when Pa Charles and Mr. Edwards discovered the cross bearing Laura's name flowing down a river and the smoke that was coming from the mountain. Jonathan determined that God had answered her prayer...in a way that Laura needed to return to a family that loves her and needs her. When Jonathan convinced Laura to return to her father, his mission for God on Earth was finished. The apparition disappeared without a trace, and Laura was reunited with her family. To this day, the Ingalls family has claimed Jonathan never appeared and that Laura's entire experience was just a dream.

appearance: "The Lord Is My Shepherd"


  • Johnson, Johnny

(played by Mitch Vogel)

Naive student who went to school in Walnut Grove at a late age. He had a crush on Mary Ingalls, while sister Laura took a fancy to him, causing tension among the sisters. Weeks later, Johnny took off to find his own adventures, under Mr. Edwards' supervision. When Johnny was able to see the errors of his ways, he returned home to Walnut Grove. A couple of years later, he left the town to become a laborer in dry goods.

first appearance: "The Love Of Johnny Johnson" last appearance: "To See The World"

  • Kagan, Joe

(played by Moses Gunn)

Professional boxer-turned-janitor. Kagan was once one of the biggest prize fighters of the 1850s and '60s, traveling the circuit and taking on some of the country's toughest opponents. Illness eventually took its toll on him, but he was determined to continue fighting "one more round". Soon, his obsession cost him his marriage and his family. In 1874, tired and feeling defeated, he came to Walnut Grove to put up a challenge for one final fight. When he became exhausted and near-suidical, Charles Ingalls looked after Kagan for a few short months to set him straight and get his strength back by working for Mr. Hanson's Mill. When Kagan finally regained his strength, he returned to Sleepy Eye only to find his own grown son Tim had followed in his father's footsteps. When Kagan confronted his son (whom he had not seen in years) in a boxing match, he defeated him, but in the process taught Tim there were more important things in life than fighting. Kagan then retired from boxing forever and in the remaining years of his life worked as a janitor for the Mankato and Sleepy Eye Blind Schools, occasionally helping blind children stand up for what's right. He was killed in the Great Tornado of 1886.

first appearance: "The Fighter" last appearance: "Make A Joyful Noise"


  • Kagan, Janie

(played by Ketty Lester)

Twin sister of Hester-Sue Terhune and ex-wife of Joe Kagan. Janie was married to Joe Kagan for 13 years but divorced him in 1864 when she discovered that his love for boxing was more important than marriage. Janie died many years later of a broken heart.

appearance: "The Fighter"


  • Kagan, Tim

(played by Justin Moses and Daryl Roach)

Only child of Joe & Janie Kagan. He was abandoned by his father at the age of 10. Tim would not see his father again until he was 23 years old, and by then he had became a fighter, following in the footsteps of his own father. In fact, Tim's final opponent was his own father! When Tim was knocked out, he was taught the most important lesson of all...not to become a shadow of his own parents. With that, Tim made peace with his father and left Sleepy Eye forever to pursue other interests.

appearance: "The Fighter"


  • Kendall, Adam Charles

(played by Linwood Boomer)

Husband of Mary Ingalls. As a young man, Adam was blinded in a freak accident. He then spent many years in a School For The Blind in Iowa, first as a student, then as a teacher's assistant. In 1875 the head of the Blind School gave Adam his newest assignment...Mary Ingalls, who had herself become blind. Despite his new subject's feistiness, Adam taught Mary everything she needed to know on becoming adjusted to her blindness, including how to eat, and how to communicate. Despite his own shortcomings, Adam became attracted to her charms and he fell in love with her. Late that year, while preparing to be married in Sleepy Eye, then were faced with the possibility of having a baby born to blind parents. Adam gave up on himself at first, but eventually came to his senses. Not long after that, Adam and Mary led a group of blind students on a journey that took them hundreds of miles away to the outskirts of Mankato, and there they established the Harriet Oleson School For The Blind. The following year, Adam and Mary's son, Adam Charles Holbrook Kendall Jr. was born. Adam was estatic on being a father. His dream was to raise his Adam Jr. as normal as possible without having him become a shadow of his parents. But those dreams were burned away in a fire at the Oleson Blind School set by Albert Ingalls and another blind student. Both Adam Jr. and Alice Garvey (another helper) were killed. Adam was crushed at the thought his only normal child would die, never being able to appreciate what Adam and Mary had long missed. Adam turned to his father, Giles Kendall, for help to fund a new blind school which would be rebuilt in the same site as the original building. But well after construction was underway, Giles died broke, leaving Adam with no money to continue rebuilding the blind school, so he decided to re-establish it in an abandoned building in the town of Sleepy Eye. Eight years later, in 1884, Adam suffered another freak accident, this time reversing his blindness. Adam was jubilant he could see for the first time in many, many years. His rediscovered sight allowed him to fulfill a life-long dream...to become a lawyer. He studied in Law School and earned a Masters' Degree in Justice. After searching for a job, he eventually opened his own practice in Walnut Grove, but when he found he and Mary could not make a living there, they decided to move where they could make money. So in 1885 the Kendalls moved to New York and set up practice at his father's old law firm. He has been very successful in the years since.

first appearance: "I'll Be Waving As You Drive Away" last appearance: "The Christmas They Never Forgot"


  • Kendall Jr., Adam Charles Holbrook

Infant son of Mary Ingalls and Adam Kendall. Born in early 1876, died in a fire at the Harriet Oleson School for the Blind in the outskirts of Mancado months later.

last appearance: "May We Make Them Proud"


  • Kendall, Mary Ingalls

(played by Melissa Sue Anderson)

Oldest daughter of Charles and Caroline Ingalls. Born Mary Caroline Ingalls in 1857, she was raised first in the Big Woods, then the plains of Kansas, and eventually in Walnut Grove. She was one of the top students in her class in elementary school and was on her way to being a teacher's aide, until her health problems began in 1871. First her eyesight began to deteriorate to a point where she needed glasses, then a year later she suffered internal injuries due to an accident involving a horse. By 1875 she suffered a near-fatal bout with Scarlet Fever, which greatly affected her eyesight. Later that year, Mary went blind, leaving her terrified and frightened. She was sent to Iowa by her parents to blind school. It was there that she met a teacher's assistant, Adam Kendall. At first she resented her new condition, but thanks to Adam's help she began to accept her handicap and learned to live with her blindness. By the end of 1875, Mary had fallen in love with her teacher and married him. The next year, Mary became pregnant. She was overjoyed at becoming a mother, but soon after suffered a miscarriage. Not one to give up, she became pregnant again, and eventually gave birth to Adam Charles Holbrook Kendall Jr. At first she couldn't face raising a child with blind parents, but would soon accept it. But as quickly as the Kendalls moved and re-established the Blind School near Mankato, their son died in a fire set at the school by her own adopted brother, Albert Ingalls. Her son's death left her in a state of shock for weeks, but Albert would indirectly snap her out of it, thus Mary came to grips with her loss. As the years passed, Mary continued to stay by her husband's side, even when Adam regained his sight and eventually became a lawyer in 1884. But times were tough for the Kendalls even in Walnut Grove, so the following year Mary and her husband moved to New York. Mary would return to Walnut Grove for the final time at Christmas 1885. Despite the tragedies Mary has suffered in her life, she remains a lady with a strong will to live.

first appearance: Original movie last appearance: "The Christmas They Never Forgot"


  • Kennedy, Christy

(played by Tracie Savage)

Student at Walnut Grove school for one season (1870-71) and best friend of Mary Ingalls. She died during the annual plague of 1872.

first appearance: "Country Girls" last appearance: "The Voice Of Tinker Jones"


  • Kennedy, Sandy

(played by Robert Hoffman)

Brother of Christy Kennedy and student at Walnut Grove School for one season (1870-71). He moved away from Walnut Grove shortly after the death of his sister Christy in 1872.

first appearance: "Country Girls" last appearance: "The Racoon"

  • Konig, John

(played by Max Power)

One of the men who blasted rocks along with Charles Ingalls, Jack Peters, and company during a crucial job in 1870.

appearance: "100 Mile Walk"

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