Little Town on the Prairie Irony

Little Town on the Prairie Irony

Nellie's Snobbery

Nellie Oleson believes herself to be a cut above everyone else - the other students at school and the general populous of the town alike. She also wastes no time in telling them so. The irony of this is that the Oleson's have less money than any of the families whose children she goes to school with and unlike most families in town they are not working themselves towards a better life but reliant on the charity of extended family members.

Miss Wilder's First Day Of School Speech

On her first day teaching school, Miss Wilder did not give homework or talk about academics, but stressed the importance of kindness and not speaking cruelly, or treating others with disrespect; the ironic thing about this is that the teacher picked on Laura and Carrie most unfairly based on spiteful things about them that Nellie Oleson told her and on fact was the only person in the school to either give credence to unkind tittle-tattle or to treat anyone unkindly.

Nellie's Pride Over Her Background

Nellie is disdainful of her new mid-western home, always referring to how wonderful it was back east, in New York. The irony in this is that the Olesons left New York when Nellie was a baby and she grew up in Plum Creek, Minnesota just feet away from the Ingalls family.

Laura's View Of Living In Town

When Laura learns the family will move to town for the winter, to avoid living in the new and uninsulated farmhouse during what is likely to be a harsh winter, she is despondent and tries to change her parents' minds as she hates the town. After the winter, when they are ready to return to the prairie, she would rather stay in town where she now has a great circle of friends and does not really want to miss anything.

The Harsh Winter That Arrives In The Spring

The Ingalls family move into town to avoid what they are sure will be a harsh, difficult winter, just like the brutal succession of snowstorms and blizzards they experienced the year before. The winter season turns out to be much milder and they return to the farm in the spring. Later in the spring they are hit by an ironically exceptionally late blizzard.

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