The Classic TV Archive - TV Western series
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"Six Graves At Cripple Creek"
Original NBC Broadcast - 27 January 1965
Executive Producer Frank Price
Produced by Winston Miller
Written by Carey Wilber
Directed by Maury Geraghty
(shown on the ride-in)
Lee J. Cobb as Judge Henry Garth (not in this episode)
Doug McClure as Trampas
Clu Gulager as Emmett Ryker
Roberta Shore as Betsy Garth (not in this episode)
Randy Boone as Randy Benton (not in this episode)
James Drury as the Virginian (not in this episode)
(credited during the ride-in)
John Doucette [Marshall Goodbody]
Complete ending credits:
Sheilah Wells as Lucille Carver
Paul Birch as John Carver
Harry Lauter as Cat McGraw
Harlan Warde . . . . . as Sheriff Brannan
Walter Reed . . . . . as Major Mallory
Catherine McLeod . . . as Mrs. Mallory
Robert Pine . . . . . as The Orderly
Richard Reeves . . . . . as Jake Grohs
William Tanner . . . . . as The Bartender
John Harmon . . . . . as B.G. Coonley
Chuck Roberson . . . . . as The Freight Wagon Driver
Johnny Dodge . . . . . as The Guard
Vince Williams . . . . . as The Citizen
Leonard P. Geer . . . . . as The Tough Guy
Virginian Theme Percy Faith
Director of Photography Benjamin H. Kline, A.S.C.
Supervising Producer Joel Rogosin
Story Editor Cy Chermak
Art Director . . . . . George Patrick
Film Editors . . . . . Edward Biery and John Joyce
Assistant Director . . . . . Les Berke
Set Decorators . . . . . John McCarthy and James M. Walters
Sound . . . . . Earl Crain, Jr.
Color Consultant . . . . . Alex Quiroga
Color by Pathe
Editorial Dept. Head . . . . . David J. O'Connell
Musical Supervision . . . . . Stanley Wilson
Costume Supervision . . . . . Vincent Dee
Makeup . . . . . Bud Westmore
Hair Stylist . . . . . Virginia Darcy
The title "The Virginian" by permission of EMKA, LTD.
Series regular characters appearing in this episode:
Featuring Ryker with a
brief appearance by Sheriff Brannan and Trampas.
While trying on a pair of shiny new black boots, Ryker is interrupted by the
sound of gunfire. He runs out of the store and shoots down two bank robbers
who are fleeing the scene of the crime. One of them is still alive,
and Ryker recognizes him as the third of four men who had raided a farm
house two years ago and killed the owner. The farmer's daughter had lived
just long enough to give Ryker a couple of names before she also died.
Despite Trampas' objection, Ryker threatens to let the bank robber die in
the street unless he gives him the name and whereabouts of the fourth raider.
The thief finally reveals the man's name is Charlie McMasters, and the
last he knew of him he was in Silver City.
In Silver City Ryker learns that McMasters had been among those killed by
Indians at Cripple Creek. Wanting to make sure his
deputy didn't kill someone in revenge, Sheriff Brannan
had wired the town's Marshall Goodbody
who arrests Ryker for carrying a gun. The marshall explains the
confinement is for protection -
some might shoot because they thought he was a friend of
McMasters and some might shoot because they thought he was an enemy.
Hearing that Ryker would pull up any flowers on McMasters' grave and
wants to look over the site to make sure the man is dead and buried there,
Goodbody offers a deal - Ryker can go if he lets
Goodbody's friend accompany him to Cripple Creek. Ryker isn't very
enthused with the deal when he finds out the "friend" is a girl - Lucy
Carver, a young woman from Pennsylvania. Lucy had received notice from
her father, whom she had not seen since she was a child, asking her to come
share in his gold strike. She now fears him to be one of those killed in
the massacre and wants to visit his grave. Concerned for the girl's
well-being, Goodbody suggests to Ryker that he take Lucy on to Fort Shields
after they have seen the burial place.
On their way Lucy explains to Ryker that she hadn't really known her father
and was now just interested in his money.
When Ryker and Lucy get to Cripple Creek they are ambushed by two men.
Ryker manages to shoot one of them, but the other gets away. Lucy tells
Ryker that she had been informed in Silver City that there were
six miners who died there. There are indeed six graves at Cripple Creek,
but none of them are marked.
Ryker takes Lucy on to the Fort where he learns from Major Mallory that
five white men and one Indian were buried at the massacre site. Perhaps
one of the miners had gotten away. Since the Major and some of his men
weren't stationed at the Fort at the time, Ryker asks if there is
anyone there who had been. The bartender relates that the night after
the Indian attack a man with a frightened look in his eyes had come in
for a bottle of whiskey. He paid for it with gold dust and had a
packhorse that looked like it was loaded down with gold bags.
He then left heading North, and in the bartender's opinion, a man in his
condition couldn't have gotten much farther than Deadwood.
Goodbody has been tracking Ryker. After partaking of his coffee, the
Marshall pistol whips Ryker and takes his horse, leaving the deputy to walk
in his new boots until a man in a buckboard offers him a ride. In Deadwood,
Goodbody confides to Ryker that he is looking for $50,000 in gold dust
that had been stolen from the Silver City Express. He wants to catch
a man to find out where the gold is and feels Ryker has a more personal
reason - to catch a man to kill him. Goodbody had done some
investigating while waiting for Ryker. All he found was a
"respectable man that ran a respectable mine," and his name is John Carver.
Lucy gets off the stage in Deadwood along with the mysterious man who
was the one that escaped after ambushing them. Goodbody wants
Ryker to take Lucy out to Carver's mine. When they arrive, the ambusher
is also there - McGraw, one of Carver's employees. Carver seems
happy to be reunited with his daughter after all the years apart. He
explains to Ryker
that he had been at Cripple Creek looking at staking claims and had run into
McMasters and his party right before the massacre.
Something about the prospector just doesn't set right with Ryker. He
encourages Lucy to be sure that Carver is really who he says he is,
but the young woman objects because she likes the idea
of finally having a father. However,
Goodbody had been talking to some townspeople who thought Carver's mine
played out a long time ago and wondered why there was barbed wire all around
his place. What of Ryker's suspicions? Is the man Lucy's father John
Carver or could he possibly be the murderous McMasters. [bj]
Character Note: When Ryker asked Sheriff Brannan for time off, Brannan
allowed it but cautioned him that "wearing a badge doesn't give you the
right to commit murder." For Ryker, "killing him wouldn't be murder."
Brannan appraises, "You know better than that. Maybe not two years ago, but
I don't think you're the same man you were two years ago." [bj]
Looking for this scene? Ryker and Goodbody have discovered the stolen gold
dust in a strongbox in Carver's mine. Carver and McGraw want to kill the
"prowlers" and start a shootout with them, trapping them in the tunnel.
Seeing no safe way of escape, Ryker fills an empty bottle with kerosene from
the oil lamps and uses Goodbody's handkerchief as a fuse. Goodbody lights
the handkerchief with a match, and Ryker throws the bottle at a hay bale,
setting it on fire to create a diversion. [bj]
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