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Pioneers of the Frontier (1940)

Approved | | Romance, Western | 14 February 1940 (USA)
After Brawley kills his boss Mort Saunders, he and his men take control of all the ranches in the valley. When Wild Bill arrives to help the ranchers he is thrown in jail by the crooked Sheriff.



(original story), (screenplay)

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Complete credited cast:
Joan Darcey (as Linda Winters)
Cannonball Simms
Henchman Dave
Henchman Bart
Jim Darcey
Mort Saunders
Ralph McCullough ...
Lem Watkins
Marshal Larsen


Mort Saunders (Lafe McKee), owner of the million-and-a-half acre Rancho del Norte, is killed and the property is taken over by his foreman, Matt Brawley (Dick Curtis), who rules like a tyrant. Settler Jim Darcey (Carl Stockdale) protests Brawley's highhanded methods and is also murdered. His daughter, Joan (Dorothy Comingore as Linda Winters), writes to Wild Bill Saunders (Bill Elliott), the dead owner's nephew and real heir to the ranch, urging him to return. Brawley and his henchmen declare that Wild Bill will never set foot on the property. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

settler | tyrant | ranch | nephew | jail | See All (59) »




Romance | Western






Release Date:

14 February 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Anchor  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


One of over a hundred Columbia features, mostly Westerns, sold to Hygo Television Films in the 1950s, who marketed them under the name of Gail Pictures; opening credits were redesigned, with some titles misspelled, the credit order of the players rearranged, some names misspelled, and new end titles attached, thus eliminating any evidence of their Columbia roots. Apparently, the original material was not retained in most of the cases, and the films have survived, even in the Sony library, only with these haphazardly created replacement opening and end credits. See more »


Dave (an outlaw) is shown with an arm in a sling even before he's shot by the hero. See more »


Followed by The Return of Wild Bill (1940) See more »

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User Reviews

A Peaceable Man Gets Riled
24 June 2011 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Wild Bill Elliott is playing Wild Bill Saunders once again in Pioneers Of The Frontier. This story has Saunders coming in to avenge the death of his uncle at the hands of perennial western villain Dick Curtis who was foreman of the uncle's vast Ponderosa like holdings.

The uncle played by Lafe McKee has an interesting scheme whereby he has pieces of his real estate leased by various small farmers and ranchers to make a go of it as he can't possibly oversee the whole thing himself. Something Ben Cartwright sure never tried. But Curtis murders both McKee and Carl Stockdale the lessee of one of the tracts. His daughter is Dorothy Comingore who gets interested in Wild Bill as a savior and maybe a husband.

As Elliott was McKee's nephew and closest heir it seemed to me that if he shows up and says to Curtis and his gun-hands to just clear out that would be all that was needed. But Curtis is far more megalomaniacal than he usually is as a villain and he likes running things even if he hasn't the semblance of a legal title to anything.

That makes Pioneers Of The Frontier a bit hard to swallow. But I'm sure the Saturday matinée kids didn't care at all in 1940.

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