Tennessee mules

Where I live in the city of Smithville, TN happens to be surrounded by fields. Mr. Agee, a local farmer, grows produce in these fields and then offers his product at a local produce stand called "Red Barn Produce". He also happens to be a mule skinner and works his fields with a mule team, which is fascinating to watch. Below are the images I captured on May 15th and the 21st of May. George and Joe are his mules and while watching them work you can really tell how much they enjoy the work. The second set of images are of Mr. Vincent from Sparta, TN and his mules Kit and Kate (red bridals). Kit and Kate had not worked with George and Joe before but you would have never known it by the way the worked together.

What does this have to do with the Main Street Project? To me, It is just another reflection of a community and a life style that represents "what was, what is, and hopefully - what will be".

23 of 226 images are shared in this gallery "Tennessee Mules"

If you are interested in obtaining any of these images, for personal use or commercial use, or wish to include a link to your web site - please contact me at bill@luton.us.

Click & Enjoy!

DeKalb County Tennessee

George, Joe, and Mr. Agee - 05/17/13


Meet George & JoeMr. Agee would let them rest after each passThe plow is an old John Deere that was pulled behind a tractor at one timeHe stated the hardest part was the jarring bounces, the mules were the easiest part as they knew their job well
He was just along for the ride and to check the depth of the plow George and Joe seemed to walk in unison George and Joe also take part in bush hogging the field behind them

George, Joe, Kit, Kate and the Skinners - 05/21/13


Part of being a skinner is knowing how to dress your mule for work The right amount of lead is important, otherwise the front team works while the other team just walks along snickering behind them The birds, in the lower right hand corner reminded me of seagulls, every time the plow came through they would grab the freshly exposed seed, bugs, or worms Kit kept her on eye on me most of the day, I don't know if the camera made her nervous or she was just photogenic
The extra team allowed the plow to dig deeper Getting lined up for the return pass Notice the depth of his right wheel, he tracks this wheel to turn the next row by keeping it in the last furrow Notice Kit is still keeping her eye on me
Walking a mule team down the road is no big deal in our town OK, the girls are in charge now Adjustments are made so the boys have to pitch in Reaching to drop the plow
No dripping oil or diesel, something to think about the next time you shop for produce They tried to work this field about three weeks ago but the rain kept them away, but not the weeds I asked Mr. Vincent "Will the mules stop or just keep going?" he said they would stop, I didn't test his theorem We are all connected to mother earth, you really do "Reap What You Sow"