Most people know Festus as the gruff, no-nonsense sheriff on Gunsmoke. What they may not know is that his character’s name was never actually mentioned on the show. In fact, the character of Festus was only supposed to be a temporary replacement for Matt Dillon’s regular deputy, Newly O’Brien.
But when fans got a taste of Ken Curtis’ take on the character, they were hooked and he became a series regular. So what was this iconic character’s name? Interestingly enough, it seems that even the writers of Gunsmoke weren’t quite sure what to call him.
In early episodes, he was simply referred to as “the new deputy” or “the tall man.” It wasn’t until episode 12 of season 9 that he was finally given the nameFestus Haggen. And it seems like that might have been more of an afterthought than anything else.
In an interview with TV Guide in 1965, Ken Curtis said that he didn’t even know his character had a last name until he saw it in the script one day!
There is some debate over what Festus Mules name actually was. Some say that his real name was Lucius Domitius Ahenobarbus, while others believe that his name was Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus Germanicus. However, it is most likely that his name was either Lucius or Gaius.
Ode to a Mule
Why Did Festus Name His Mule Ruth
When it comes to naming a pet, there are all sorts of reasons why people might choose a certain name. Sometimes, the name is chosen based on the animal’s personality or appearance. Other times, the name is simply a favorite of the owner.
In the case of Festus’ mule, Ruth, it is likely that the latter is true. Ruth was apparently a very special mule to Festus and he clearly had a great deal of affection for her. He even went so far as to have her coffin custom-made when she died.
It would seem that he named her after his late wife, which just goes to show how much she meant to him.
How Many Miles Played Ruth on Gunsmoke
Ruth played on Gunsmoke for 20 years and never missed an episode. She was in 1,435 episodes total. The show was originally a radio program, but switched to television in 1952.
It is the longest-running primetime scripted series in American history.
Ruth the Mule on Gunsmoke
Ruth the Mule was a character on the long-running television series Gunsmoke. She was played by a real mule named Daisy.
Ruth first appeared in the episode titled “Matt Gets It”.
In that episode, she belonged to a farmer named Fred Toomey who was killed by an outlaw. Matt Dillon, the main character of Gunsmoke, took Toomey’s body to Dodge City and left Ruth with his friend Chester Goode. Chester said that he didn’t want Ruth but Matt told him that he would take her back when he came back to Dodge.
Chester reluctantly agreed and ended up becoming very attached to Ruth. He even gave her a bath and put ribbons in her hair. When Matt returned for Ruth, Chester didn’t want to give her up but eventually did.
Matt then made Ruth his pack mule and she appeared in several episodes carrying supplies for him. Ruth was also known for being stubborn and uncooperative at times. In one episode, she refused to move when Matt tried to get her going again after she had stopped in the middle of the trail.
This resulted in him having to drag her along behind him until she finally got moving again! Despite her stubbornness, Ruth was a loyal companion to Matt Dillon and helped him out on many occasions throughout the run of Gunsmoke.
Why Did Festus Leave Gunsmoke
When Festus Haggen first rode into Dodge City on Gunsmoke, he was a rough-and-tumble buffalo hunter. He quickly became friends with Matt Dillon and the other residents of Dodge, and even though he wasn’t always the most law-abiding citizen, he was a good man at heart. So why did Festus leave Gunsmoke?
The answer is both simple and complicated. The simple answer is that actor Ken Curtis wanted to leave the show. The complicated answer has to do with behind-the-scenes politics and creative differences.
Curtis had been wanting to leave Gunsmoke for a few years before his character finally rode out of town. He was unhappy with the direction the show was going in and felt that his character wasn’t being used to his full potential. There were also rumors that Curtis and series lead James Arness weren’t getting along well off-screen.
Whatever the reasons, Curtis made the decision to leave Gunsmoke in 1975. The writers decided to kill off Festus’ character rather than have him simply ride out of town. In the episode “The Rescue,” Festus is badly injured while trying to save a young boy from a runaway horse.
He lingers in a coma for weeks before finally passing away surrounded by his friends in Dodge City. Festus Haggen was one of the most popular characters on Gunsmoke during its 20+ year run on CBS. His departure was definitely felt by viewers, but ultimately it was time for Ken Curtis to move on to other projects.
What was Festus Hagen’S Mules Name?
Festus Hagen’s mules name was Queen. Queen was a beautiful, strong and intelligent animal. She was Festus’ best friend and companion, and he loved her dearly.
Was Festus Mule a Male?
Yes, Festus was a male mule. He was born in 1965 and died in 2000. He was the property of the United States Government and lived at the Fort Myer stables in Arlington, Virginia.
What was Festus Twin Name?
Festus’s twin name was Julius. They were born on the same day and were very close as children. As they grew older, they went their separate ways and only saw each other occasionally.
What was Festus Last Name on Gunsmoke?
The last name of Festus Haggen on Gunsmoke was originally just “Festus.” It was never actually revealed what his last name was.
In the blog post, the author discusses the various theories about Festus Mules name. The most popular theory is that his name was actually Festus Mulciber. However, there are other theories that suggest his name may have been Festus Claudius or even just Festus.
Ultimately, we don’t know for sure what his name was, but the author suggests that it’s likely we’ll never find out.