The BEST Episodes of Little House on the Prairie

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Nov 8, 2020

Network: NBC

Based upon the best selling "Little House" series of books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. The show follows the lives of a simple farming family, the Ingalls, who settle into a quaint little house near the small town of Walnut Grove during the late 1800s. The majority of the shows were narrated by Laura and the series follows her from when she and her family arrive in Walnut Grove until her adulthood with Almanzo Wilder, with whom she starts a family of her own.

The Silent Cry

#1 - The Silent Cry

Season 7 - Episode 5 - Aired Oct 20, 1980

The orphanage in Sleepy Eye faces a difficult situation when two young brothers meet with a potential adoptive family. The younger child refuses to speak and shows symptoms of emotional trauma, so the family is only interested in taking the older child. Rather than be separated, the boys run away to the nearby blind school, where the kindly Houston agrees to help. Although the aging Houston would love to adopt them himself, it creates problems that he cannot handle by himself, so Charles and Jonathan must intervene.

star 8.72
76 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Michael Landon
Dark Sage

#2 - Dark Sage

Season 8 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 26, 1981

Dr. Baker posts an ad for another doctor, to relieve his workload (and Mrs. Oleson's constant pestering). He hires Dr. Caleb Ledoux, but doesn't count on him being black. The Ingalls are among the very few to accept Dr. Ledoux, as others are outright hateful and racist. Even Dr. Baker struggles with his prejudice and, to show his spite, gives the young doctor minor cases. In the end, Dr. Ledoux is the only doctor available to call on a pregnant woman who is having labor complications. The woman's husband won't allow the doctor in the house (because he's black), and can only get to her when Charles knocks the man aside. Ledoux performs a successful surgery and delivers a son to the couple. A stunned and shaken Dr. Baker witnesses the surgery and concedes that only Caleb's and his superior training could have saved the woman's life. Dr. Ledoux later angrily tells his wife he plans to leave Walnut Grove. But only Dr. Baker's emotional speech at church convinces the good doctor to stay.

star 8.72
61 votes
Directors: Maury Dexter
Writers: Vince R. Gutierrez
The Nephews

#3 - The Nephews

Season 7 - Episode 14 - Aired Jan 19, 1981

Almanzo gets suckered into watching his brother Royal's two bratty boys.

star 8.70
69 votes
Writers: Chris Abbott
The Lost Ones (2)

#4 - The Lost Ones (2)

Season 7 - Episode 22 - Aired May 11, 1981

The Cooper children go home with Charles, but as they're adjusting, a set of adoptive parents arrive.

star 8.68
60 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Don Balluck

#5 - Blizzard

Season 3 - Episode 11 - Aired Dec 27, 1976

The day before Christmas vacation started, Miss Beadle lets the children out early when she notices that a snowstorm is beginning. The children aren't able to make it home before the storm starts. The men of Walnut Grove search for the children while Doc Baker takes care of the frostbitten children that show up at the school.

star 8.67
99 votes
Writers: Paul W. Cooper
The Lost Ones (1)

#6 - The Lost Ones (1)

Season 7 - Episode 21 - Aired May 4, 1981

While making an out-of-town delivery, Albert and Charles meet and travel with the Cooper family. An accident occurs en route with the parents, leaving Charles in charge of their two children.

star 8.60
94 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Don Balluck
The Campout

#7 - The Campout

Season 2 - Episode 9 - Aired Nov 19, 1975

The Olesons get themselves invited onto the Ingalls family campout, after Nellie complains that it will give Laura and Mary an advantage for the school holiday project of leaf-collecting. The two man bond while fishing and their wives try to improve their relationship, but the children continue to clash. However, when Nellie falls into a river, her later false account of what happened brings out the same Mrs. Oleson. Back at the school. the result of the leaves project gives some satisfaction to Laura and Mary.

star 8.57
93 votes
Directors: Victor French
Writers: Hindi Brooks
The Reincarnation of Nellie (2)

#8 - The Reincarnation of Nellie (2)

Season 8 - Episode 2 - Aired Oct 12, 1981

Nancy turns out to be worse than Nellie ever was. She even locks another girl in the ice house. The students devise a plan to teach Nancy a lesson. They trick her into being the star in a dunking tank. Also during this episode, Adam and Mary move to New York so that they can earn a living and Hester Sue comes to Walnut Grove to work at the restaurant.

star 8.57
72 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Michael Landon
Laura Ingalls Wilder (1)

#9 - Laura Ingalls Wilder (1)

Season 7 - Episode 1 - Aired Sep 22, 1980

Upon being sold a piece of land, Almanzo is eager to begin building a home for him and Laura. He hires his friend Harv Miller to assist him with his crop. Meanwhile, Laura is offered a teaching job at a faraway school.

star 8.57
90 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Michael Landon
The Award

#10 - The Award

Season 1 - Episode 12 - Aired Dec 11, 1974

While studying for an optional history exam in the barn, Mary accidentally knocks over a reading lamp and starts a fire. Caroline punishes Mary by telling her she couldn't take the exam. Mary doesn't tell Ms. Beadle this until the day of the exam.

star 8.39
114 votes
Writers: Michael Landon
For The Love of Nancy

#11 - For The Love of Nancy

Season 8 - Episode 9 - Aired Nov 30, 1981

An overweight boy comes to school at Walnut Grove. The schoolkids pick on him because he is so heavy. Nancy persuades the boy to bully the other school children. The jokes of the school children get so bad that the obese boy decides to quit school. The school children then decide that enough is enough. They go over and apologize to him.

star 8.39
59 votes
Directors: Maury Dexter
Writers: Chris Abbott
Ebenezer Sprague

#12 - Ebenezer Sprague

Season 2 - Episode 3 - Aired Sep 24, 1975

Laura Ingalls is stunned to learn that her amiable fishing friend is none other than Walnut Grove's new banker, miserly Ebenezer Sprague, and heartbroken when he accuses her of becoming his friend to secure a loan for her family.

star 8.37
107 votes
Directors: Victor French
I'll Be Waving As You Drive Away (1)

#13 - I'll Be Waving As You Drive Away (1)

Season 4 - Episode 21 - Aired Mar 6, 1978

Mary falls in love with Seth. When Mary's eyesight starts to get worse, Charles takes her to a specialist. He is devastated when the specialist tells him that Mary will lose her sight. Charles is unable to tell Mary for a while that she is going blind. When Mary does go blind, the whole family suffers.

star 8.13
55 votes
Writers: Carole Raschella, Michael Raschella
Back To School (2)

#14 - Back To School (2)

Season 6 - Episode 2 - Aired Sep 24, 1979

When Laura and Nellie get in a fight about the graduation test, Almanzo separates them and takes Laura home with him. When Charles finds out that Almanzo took Laura home with him, Charles goes to Almanzo's place and punches Almanzo because he fears his daughter was being taken advantage of. Laura yells at the fighting pair and tells them that she is no longer a child.

star 8.12
153 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Michael Landon
Stone Soup

#15 - Stone Soup

Season 8 - Episode 13 - Aired Jan 18, 1982

Laura finds that balancing her teaching duties at school and managing Almonzo's orchard, while he and Charles are gone on a delivery trip to Arizona, too much to handle. Her heart-to-heart talk with a maturing Willie may hold the key to both their futures in this coming-of-age story.

star 8.10
70 votes
Directors: Maury Dexter
Writers: Peter Dixon
Christmas At Plum Creek

#16 - Christmas At Plum Creek

Season 1 - Episode 15 - Aired Dec 25, 1974

The Christmas holiday is approaching and the members of the Ingalls family go about their holiday shopping in secrecy. Laura is able to buy her mom a stove that she wanted after she sells her horse to Mr. Oleson.

star 8.09
192 votes
Writers: Arthur Heinemann

#17 - Plague

Season 1 - Episode 18 - Aired Jan 29, 1975

Several people in Walnut Grove get very sick. A quarantine is set up in the church while the source of the illness is being sought.

star 8.07
72 votes
Writers: Michael Landon, William Keys
A Christmas They Never Forgot

#18 - A Christmas They Never Forgot

Season 8 - Episode 11 - Aired Dec 21, 1981

Mary, Adam, Hester Sue, the Wilders, and the Ingalls are all together for Christmas. The snow begins falling and soon they are snowed in by a blizzard. To pass time, several of them tell stories. Laura talks about the Christmas in Kansas when Mr. Edwards came.

star 8.06
49 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Don Balluck
Dearest Albert, I'll Miss You

#19 - Dearest Albert, I'll Miss You

Season 7 - Episode 8 - Aired Nov 17, 1980

Albert tries to impress a penpal he figures he'll never see.

star 8.05
73 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Michael Landon
Going Home

#20 - Going Home

Season 2 - Episode 22 - Aired Mar 31, 1976

After a tornado ruins his crop, Charles decides to sell the land and return to the Big Woods of Wisconsin without consulting his family.

star 8.05
59 votes
Mortal Mission

#21 - Mortal Mission

Season 5 - Episode 23 - Aired Mar 12, 1979

Charles and Jonathan meet with danger as deadly as the disease they left behind them when they are sent for the medical supplies needed to battle an outbreak of anthrax in Walnut Grove.

star 8.05
41 votes
Writers: John T. Dugan
Country Girls

#22 - Country Girls

Season 1 - Episode 2 - Aired Sep 18, 1974

Laura and Mary start school for the first time. That is where they meet Nellie Oleson. Since Laura hasn't been to school before, she tries especially hard with her schoolwork. The students have to write an essay to present in front of the class. Laura recites what she would have written on the paper if she could have, instead of what was actually written on it.

star 8.03
353 votes
Writers: Juanita Bartlett
The Handyman

#23 - The Handyman

Season 4 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 3, 1977

Charles must take a delivery to Mankato immediately and is unable to finish the addition to his house. Caroline hires a handsome man, Chris, to finish the house. Mary suspects that her Ma and Chris are falling in love.

star 8.02
61 votes
Writers: Arthur Heinemann
The Hunters

#24 - The Hunters

Season 3 - Episode 10 - Aired Dec 20, 1976

Pa decides to take Laura hunting with him. When Charles and Laura are getting settled down for the night, Laura trips over her dad's gun and sets it off. Charles is badly wounded. Laura runs to get help, but the only person she can find is a blind person, Sam. Since Sam just recently became blind, he knew his way around somewhat. After getting lost a few times, Sam and Laura finally find Mr. Edwards' home. Mr. Edwards gets a doctor, who saves Mr. Ingalls. Thanks to Laura, Sam learned that just because he was blind didn't mean he had to stay at home and do nothing.

star 8.00
56 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Harold Swanton
A Wiser Heart

#25 - A Wiser Heart

Season 8 - Episode 5 - Aired Nov 2, 1981

Laura goes to visit Eliza Jane because of a literature seminar that is going on in town. Laura has to find a part-time job to pay for meals and other stuff. She ends up hating the job. There is a person who Laura met on the train who begins to like Eliza Jane. Eliza Jane in turn begins to like the professor teaching the seminar and the professor likes Laura. The professor tells Laura that her writing is bad when Laura tells him she is happily married. The man on the train eventually defends Laura's writing. It only takes one punch by the man to get the professor to take off and leave.

star 8.00
75 votes
Directors: Michael Landon
Writers: Chris Abbott