Mule Train Mail
By: Craig Brown
“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of
night stays these couriers from the swift
completion of their appointed rounds.”
Anthony the Postman isn’t worried about barking dogs or unfriendly neighbors. He doesn’t drive a mail truck or wear a uniform, either. Anthony the Postman is a muleteer. Each day he drives a train of mules from the top of the Grand Canyon to the town of Supai far below. The trail is steep, and sometimes dangerous, but no matter the weather, Anthony knows that the mail must go through.
Craig Brown traveled to the Grand Canyon to observe the only mule train delivery route in the United States. Vibrant pencil and pastel illustrations bring to life the three-hour journey that postman Anthony Paya makes each day to deliver mail to the people of Supai.
A portion of the proceeds from sales of this book will go to the Havasupai Head Start program, which helps children in Supai develop early reading skills.
Look Inside the Book:
Author & Illustrator Bios:Craig Brown, author/illustrator
Craig Brown has written and/or illustrated more than fifteen books, including Cucumber Soup and How Do You Raise a Raisin? Craig lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Read more about Craig.
Awards & Honors:
- CCBC Choices
- Bank Street College of Education's Best Children's Books of the Year
In some remote pockets of Arizona, the postman wears a cowboy hat and leads a mule train. The front endpaper illustration traces the mail route through the Grand Canyon. At the South Rim of the Canyon, boxes of mail are transferred froma Postal Service truck to the saddlepacks of Anthony the postman's six mules. He rides a horse and has an eager dog to help guide him along the zigzagging trail, full of sharp switchbacks. A succession of double-page spreads that need to be turned 90 degrees for proper viewing emphasizes the steep descent of the route. Deep mud, ice and flash floods make the trail treacherous, but never prevent Anthony from completing his route, which is narrated in aa simple, concrete present tense. At length, the mule train reaches its destination, the village of Supai, tucked into a green valley, where Anthony unloads the mail and—because Supai is also Anthony's home—his family greets him. Brown's illustrations, in pastel and colored pencil, look appropriately sun-washed. informative as well as evocative, and told with crisp clarity.
The Grand Canyon is a national park established in the early 20th century. At the bottom of the canyon is the remote village of Supai, accessible only by helicopter, horse, or mule. Join Anthony the Postman as he delivers the mail to his hometown on the Havasupai Indian Reservation, leading a mule train down the steep, striking canyon.
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Page count: 36
9 x 9