The Virginian (1962–1971)
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Clay tries to prevent a range war between the ranchers and homesteaders who are blocking their path to market. A hothead rancher hires a gunfighter on the sly who happens to be an old friend of Trampas who falls for a homesteader.


Abner Biberman


Arthur Heinemann, Owen Wister (novel)




Episode cast overview:
John McIntire ... Clay Grainger
Doug McClure ... Trampas
Clu Gulager ... Emmett Ryker
Don Quine ... Stacey Grainger (credit only)
Sara Lane ... Elizabeth Grainger (credit only)
James Drury ... The Virginian
Steve Ihnat ... Jed Matthews
Brenda Scott ... Abby Keefer
Sammy Jackson Sammy Jackson ... Ron Keefer
Stuart Margolin ... Abe Yeager
Ken Swofford ... Seth Pettit
Walter Coy ... Tom Tallman
Lew Brown Lew Brown ... Clint Timmins
Victor Creatore Victor Creatore ... Texas
Jill Jenkins Jill Jenkins ... Bar Girl


A meeting at Shiloh of the local ranchers erupts into a shouting and pushing match as they argue about how to handle their traditional route to market being blocked by the homesteaders. The detour adds 50 miles hurting the cattle and taking more time. Tom Tallman and his foreman Abe Yeager are the most vocal about fighting while Clay wants to avoid a range war saying the homesteaders have a right to be there. Tallman allows Yeager to hire Jed Matthews for his gun to come to Medicine Bow to fight homesteaders blocking the pass. Jed arrives in Medicine Bow and sees Trampas an old friend from ten years earlier. Trampas introduces Jed to the attractive Abby Keefer who is a sister of the homesteader Ken Keefer. Tallman has Jed go to work at Shiloh to spy on their plans as the ranchers have differing views on how to handle the problem. Abby falls for Jed as the two continue to meet forcing him to choose sides in the dispute. Keefer's barn is burned by ranchers but Clay and other ranchers ... Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

10 January 1968 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This is the first episode with John McIntire in the initial ride in credits in place of Charles Bickford who passed away. See more »

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User Reviews

One nasty potential range war
4 July 2019 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

In this Virginian episode John McIntire tries to be a voice of reason as a usual cattle trail is now blocked by a new crop of homesteaders who've been told they could farm. Another trail is some 50 miles longer and some ranchers like Walter Coy aren't having it.

A real sneak of a top hand of Coy's played by Stuart Margolin locates an old friend, a fast gun played by Steve Ihnat and hires him on for Coy. But when Ihnat arrives in town he meets up with Doug McClure with whom he has history. He goes to work for Shiloh instead as Margolin decides he might best be used as a spy.

What complicates things for Ihnat besides Trampas is brother and sister Sammy Jackson and Brenda Scott. Ihnat falls for Brenda.

I think you have an idea where this is going, but this episode belongs to both Ihnat and Margolin. Ihnat carries such an air of sadness about him in the story. Great use of body language. As for Margolin he's best known for being Angel Martin in The Rockford Files where he's the sneak's sneak. There it's for comic effect, here he's quite the rat.

A good Virginian episode which also marks John McIntire's debut in the series.

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