According to a list in the Laura Ingalls Wilder/ Rose Wilder Lane Papers at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library, the following were all possibilities in contention for being the title of the book ultimately published as Little House in the Big Woods. I had always enjoyed thinking about this list of names and although I think they definitely chose the right title for the book, I was always partial the last option on the list.
Little Pioneer Girl
Long Ago Yesterday
Little Girl in the Big Woods
Long Ago in the Big Woods
Laura in the Big Woods
The Day Before Yesterday
Little Girl of Yesterday
Little Girl of the Wild West
When it came time to name my speaking services, I definitely wanted to avoid any direct connection with “Little House” which is a legally complicated trademark. Several other options I might have considered were already in use. That’s when I remembered the last possible title on this list. I had always thought it had quite a ring and ultimately I decided to use that as my brand for my website, blog, YouTube channel, Twitter, and radio show. I should point out that Trundlebed should really be Trundle-bed or Trundle Bed, but I deliberately made it one word, first so people wouldn’t have to enter or remember punctuation when they searched for me and second I like the strong outline of the words with 2 capital Ts. I paralleled the 2 Ts in the name for the subseries of travel episodes on my radio show, Travel Times. So now you know just what’s in a name.
UPDATED June 16 2018: I added my current signature block and a photo.
Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, look at her photos, and find her on Facebook , Twitter , Google+, LinkedIn , SlideShare, and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.