Spotlight On: Famous Farm Animals!
For today’s blog post, we are taking a break from all the informational stuff and having some fun. So many well-loved childrens’ books, movies, cartoons and more have been created around funny barnyard animals and we decided it would be fun to highlight a few of the most famous and well known.
This famous horse was the star of the television show “Mr. Ed,” which ran from 1958 to 1966. The star of the show, Mr. Ed, was a talking horse owned by Wilbur Post. Wilbur’s peculiar horse gets him into all sorts of trouble and funny predicaments, on account of the fact that Mr. Ed will only talk to him and leaves everyone else in the dark! Mr. Ed is actually played by a horse whose real-life name was Bamboo Harvester, and his voice talent came from Western star Allan Lane. The show was a huge hit when it aired and reruns are still shown quite frequently.
Charlotte’s Web cast
This famous children’s story written by E.B. White has several well-known farm animals, so we’ll highlight the main ones here! Charlotte, one of the main characters, isn’t really what you may think of as a barnyard animal, but as a spider, she definitely has a spot in most barns that I know! But unlike the spiders that may have taken up residence in your barns, this friendly spider was a friend to all the animals who called the barn home, mainly to the story’s star, Wilbur the pig. This young pig, destined to end up on the farmer’s dinner table, develops a friendship with Charlotte the spider that ultimately saves his life. By using her great web-weaving skills, Charlotte creates messages about the funny pig that convince the farmer that Wilbur really is “some pig” and that he should be spared from a future of bacon and ham. Made into a few different movie versions, this story is well loved by children and adults alike and continues to be a classic to this day.
Francis the Talking Mule
Another character similar to Mr. Ed is Francis the Talking Mule, an Army mule who befriends Peter Stirling, a young soldier serving in the war. Similarly to Mr. Ed, Francis would only talk to his one human friend, Peter, causing all kinds of funny situations and mischief. The mule made it into a series of films, all highlighting the adventures and different places that Francis would visit. The voice of Francis was played by actor Chill Wills, and the actual mule who played Francis was, surprisingly a female named Molly. She was chosen because she was easy to handle and well trained for many of the scenarios that the movies depicted. Molly was actually trained by the same man who trained Bamboo Harvester, AKA, Mr. Ed!
Three Billy Goats Gruff
These three characters debut in a famous Norwegian fairy tale that has been shared around the world for decades. While they aren’t quite barnyard-dwellers, these three are faced with adventures and obstacles they must overcome in order to find fresh pasture land to graze and live on. They must cross a river over a bridge that is patrolled by a troll who threatens to gobble up any trespassers. The three work together to trick the troll into letting them all cross and are freed from the hungry bridge guardian. There have been many, many versions of this story since the first appeared in English in 1859, and there have also been musicals and plays adapted from the story. The three Billy Goats Gruff are certainly a trio that can be considered in the group with the rest of these famous barnyard animals!
There are probably many, many more characters we could highlight, but these are some of the first that came to mind and certainly some of the most famous out there.
What are some famous farm animals who make you and your family smile?