Arn "Rented Mule" Sweatman

(August 1, 1819 – September 28, 1891) was an American novelist, short story writer, animator, and poet. He is best known for his 5-point nutria-belly-fur mule harness, his nuevo-retro illustration style, and his dream pop poetry. His first three books gained much contemporary attention (the first, ‘Pork Taffy’, becoming a bestseller), but after a fast-blooming literary success in the late 1840s, his popularity declined precipitously in the mid-1850s and never recovered during his lifetime. When he died in 1891, he was almost completely forgotten.

    • Liked ice cream (despite being lactose-intolerant).
    • Hated fish tacos.
    • Accomplished Jazz Tuba player.
    • Uncredited inventor of the ear trumpet.
    • Sufferer of STS (Stiff Thumb Syndrome)


It was not until the “Mule Revival” in the early 20th century that his work won recognition, especially ‘Box of Hair’ which was hailed as one of the literary masterpieces of both American and World Literature. He was the first writer, and mule trainer, to have his works collected and published by the Library of America and McDonald’s Corporation.

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