Wagon Train (1957–1965)
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The Katy Piper Story 

Barnaby is forced to shot and kill a boy his own age who took a woman and her daughters hostage. He is cleared of any wrongdoing but cannot shake the blood he feels is on his hands plus the judge wants him to inform the boy's mother.


Joseph Pevney


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Episode cast overview:
Robert Fuller ... Cooper Smith
John McIntire ... Christopher Hale (credit only)
Frank McGrath ... Charlie Wooster
Terry Wilson ... Bill Hawks
Michael Burns ... Barnaby West
Frances Reid ... Dr. Katy Piper
Virginia Christine ... Mrs. Reed
Don Beddoe ... Judge
Loyal T. Lucas Loyal T. Lucas ... Old Man
Buddy Joe Hooker ... Joel Reed / Lonnie Reed (as Buddy Hart)
Melody Thomas Scott ... Samantha (as Melody Thomas)
Jeff Pevney Jeff Pevney ... The Boy
Rene Patterson Rene Patterson ... Rosie


Charlie Wooster and Barnaby West have the task of escorting Dr. Katy Piper and her daughters to join up with the Chris Hale wagon train. Barnaby is forced to shoot a masked bandit who has hijacked the Piper wagon and ends up killing the bandit. The bandit turns out to be a teenage boy, and though Barnaby is cleared of any wrong doing, he carries the guilt of the killing and the judge tasks him with telling the boy's mother of the death. His guilt is manifested in the stigma of a constantly bleeding gun hand, though there is no physical wound. Barnaby ultimately quits the train when it's time to visit the dead boys mother. The news has already reached her and she, along with the rest of the town, are ready to kill Barnaby for what he's done. Katy Piper and Cooper Smith arrive in time to prevent Barnaby from being killed but not before the dead boy's twin is shot. With the young man weakened by blood loss Barnaby volunteers to be the donor in a radical procedure called blood transfusion... Written by DarSpi

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Release Date:

11 April 1965 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The first blood transfusion of animal blood (sheep) to human was in 1667; the first successful transfusion of human blood was performed in 1818. Generally, early blood transfusions were risky and by the late 19th century had fallen out of favor within the medical field. ABO blood types were discovered in 1900; the concept did not exist in 1869. See more »

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User Reviews

The guilt lingers
21 February 2018 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

This Wagon Train story belongs to Michael Burns, to Frances Reid playing the title character and to Virginia Christine playing a grieving mother. Her grief is real, while meeting Frances Reid's wagon which was joining the Wagon Train, Reid and her four adopted daughters were being held hostage by a menacing teenager just about Barnaby West's age. He's got a gun so Burns jumps the wagon and shoots killing the kid. Turns out he was menacing them with a gun that had no firing pin, like that's immediately apparent.

Burns develops a stigmata in his left hand, his gun hand. Though he's cleared by Judge Don Beddoe the guilt lingers. However as a budding cowboy hero he gets a chance to be redeemed.

Both Frances Reid and Virginia Christine deserve a lot of praise. Christine only comes in the episode in the last 15 minutes. But she is unforgettable.

If Wagon Train had lasted another season or two, Michael Burns might have carried a few more stories. But all things must end and Wagon Train did have a respectable 8 year run.

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