The 60s Official Site

 

 

The Virginian

The Virginian, also known as The Men From Shiloh, is an American Western-themed television series starring James Drury and Doug McClure which aired on NBC from 1962 to 1971 for a total of 249 episodes. It was the first Western to air in 90-minute installments each week (75 minutes excluding commercial breaks), and was filmed in the color format from its inception. The Virginian is the third longest running TV western with its nine seasons and 249 episodes It follows Bonanza at fourteen seasons and 430 episodes and Gunsmoke at twenty seasons and 635 episodes.  This series can still be seen on TV today.

Loosely based on the Owen Wister novel, the series revolves around a foreman, played by James Drury, who goes by the name The Virginian; his real name was never revealed in the nine years the show was on the air. The series takes place in Medicine Bow, Wyoming, and revolves around The Virginian's quest to maintain an orderly lifestyle for the ranch he works on, which is called Shiloh Ranch. The ranch was named after the Battle of Shiloh which took place for two days in Tennessee during the civil war in 1862. Other key characters besides The Virginian include ranch owner Judge Garth (played by Lee J. Cobb), his daughter Betsy (played by Roberta Shore) and loyal ranch hands, Trampas (played by Doug McClure) and Steve Hill (played by Gary Clarke). The Virginian's white horse on the show is named Joe D. and Trampas' brown horse was named Buck. As the show progressed, Trampas became the more recognizable of the characters, and it continues to be the role for which actor Doug McClure is best known.

Randy Benton (played by Randy Boone) joined the show in the second season as a youthful ranch hand who plays guitar and sings duets of folk and country songs with Betsy Garth. In 1965 Decca Records released an LP of songs from the two singing actors. The series theme song was titled "Lonesome Tree" and was written by Percy Faith and conducted by Revue musical director, Stanley Wilson. The third season adds Deputy Sheriff Emmett Ryker (played by Clu Gulager) while the fourth season adds Garth's niece Jennifer Sommers (played by Diane Roter) upon Betsy Garth's departure from Shiloh ranch.

The ranch has several owners throughout the program's run starting with Judge Garth who is replaced briefly by Morgan Starr (played by John Dehner) who then leaves with no explanation. John Grainger (played by Charles Bickford) then becomes the new owner. Clay Grainger (played by John McIntire) takes over ownership after his brother's death. The fifth season adds a new female lead character with Grainger's grand daughter Elizabeth Grainger (played by Sara Lane) and adds grand son Stacy Grainger (played by Don Quine). The sixth season adds Holly Grainger (played by Jeanette Nolan) as the wife of McIntire's character. The seventh season adds ranch hand David Sutton (played by David Hartman). In the beginning of the seventh season, a popular Canadian Irish folk group The Irish Rovers appeared on several shows as the musical guest. The eighth season adds ranch hand Jim Horn (played by Tim Matheson).

The final owner is Colonel Alan MacKenzie (played by Stewart Granger). The final season has no female lead character in the cast and includes ranch hand Roy Tate (played by Lee Majors). In the final year when Colonel MacKenzie took over the ranch, the name of the program was changed to The Men from Shiloh and the look of the series was completely redesigned. The opening theme song now by Ennio Morricone and titles were changed reflecting a style similar to spaghetti westerns that were popular at the time. The hats worn featured much broader brims and higher crowns, the male characters wore beards and mustaches and the clothing was jauntier and more imaginative. These changes brought a better ranking (#18) in the top thirty prime time shows after the previous year saw the show slip out of the top thirty rankings for the first time ever. There seemed little that could save it as the final season brought in some big guest stars to the remaining episodes. The studio and network were set on ending the series, as evidenced by rivals CBS and ABC making demographic moves away from rural oriented shows (see "rural purge" for more information). The final episode aired on March 24, 1971 ending its 9 season run. Bonanza ended its 14 season run on January 16, 1973. Gunsmoke ended its 20 season run on March 31, 1975 effectively ending the era of classic western TV series that started in the 50's.

 

Your Daily Oldies Fix

CQHams

An Enlightening Quiche, a novel by Eva Pasco

 

Hullabaloo! Dave Hull

 

My Summer on Haight Street by Robert Rice Jr.

 

Inside Songs of the Sixties by Brian Forsythe 

Culinary Tributeto the Beatles 

 

The 60s - Carl - 1968 - Vietnam

 Vietnam -1968

The 60s - Webmaster - 2006

 Today

 

HollywoodMegaStore.com

Altamont AugieEva Pasco's Book

 

Somewhere in the Distance by David Soulsby 

The Isla Vista Crucible

 

Read my Blog

 Franchise Trees

40th Anniversary of Woodstock

Vibration of a Nation Video 

Sign the Guestbook 

 

Jukeboxes

Go to The 60s Official Site Jukebox

 

 

 

 

 

Home
Updates and New Content
My Home Town - Circleville Ohio
Cruisin'
My Jade East Adventure
The 60s Tradition of Eating Together as a Family
The Blown Perfect Game
The Great Pumpkin Caper
The Haunted Bridge Near Yellowbud
Union Street Beat
Union Street Peeping Toms
What Ever Happened to The Cool Jocks?
Top Ten Countdown
The Sixties With Eva Pasco
David Soulsby Reflections
Ask Big Dog
Things You Just Don't Hear Anymore
1960s Candy
60s Articles - Baby Boomers
60s Fads & Fashions
60s Music A Decade of Great Music
60s Songs That Peaked on the Charts in 1970
Grammy Award Winners
Our Music, Our Times, Remember When?
The 60s Craziest Songs
The Top 100 Recording Artists of the 50s and 60s Era
Webmaster's Pick of the Top 100 Songs of the Decade
60s Rock 'N Roll Headline News
A Story of Life - A Thousand Marbles
60s Slang- Do You Remember These?
A Tribute to Elvis
Elvis Presley's Top Recordings
Stories About Elvis Presley
Baby Boomer Cities
British Music Invasion
British Top Hits of the 1960s
Chickenman
Chickenman Has Been Identified
Class Reunion Tips
Dance Crazes of the 60s
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream Speech"
Drive-In Theater Memories
Flashback Time Capsule High School Years
Great TV Commercial Jingles
Living in Black and White
Moms Cookbook
Movies of the 60s
Quotes of the Baby Boomer Generation
Remembering Valentine's Day
Previous Spotlighted Artists
Vikki Carr
Bob Dylan
Lovin' Spoonful
Rhythm and Blues Music of the 1960s
Rock 'N Roll Hall of Fame
Route 66 - The Mother Road
Summer of Love
Television in the 60s
The Economy and Prices
The Headlines and Key Facts of the 1960s
The Pickle Jar
The Top Ten Songs on this Day
The Vietnam War - The War that Changed a Generation
Medal of Honor Soldiers
Music Favorites from 'Nam
My Tour Pics of Vietnam
Pictures From The Vietnam War
Tet Offensive - An Explanation
Vietnam War Myths
Vietnam War Time Line
Today in Baby Boomer History
Top DJs of the 60s
Toys and Games
Whatever Happened to
Woodstock Rock Festival

 Your Daily Oldies Fix

CQHams

 My Blog

 

Go to The 60s Official Site Jukebox

Sign the Guestbook