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Santa Fe Trail (1940)

Not Rated | | Adventure, Biography, Drama | 28 December 1940 (USA)
2:12 | Trailer

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In 1854, Jeb Stuart, George Custer and other graduates from West Point are posted to Kansas to help pacify the territory before railroad construction to Santa Fe can resume.



(original screenplay)



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Cast overview, first billed only:
'Kit Carson' Holliday (as Olivia De Havilland)
Bob Holliday
Gene Reynolds ...
Cyrus Holliday
Windy Brody
Phil Sheridan
Hobart Cavanaugh ...
Barber Doyle


The story of Jeb Stuart, his romance with Kit Carson Holliday, friendship with George Custer and battles against John Brown in the days leading up to the outbreak of the American Civil War. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Where the railroad and civilization ended, the Sante Fe Trail began! See more »


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 December 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Diary of the Santa Fe  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (cut)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)| (Vitasound)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Aptly enough, the movie made its world premiere in Santa Fe, New Mexico. See more »


J.E.B. Stuart's wife was named Flora Cooke, not Kit Carson Holliday. See more »


Kit Carson Holliday: Jeb, I'm frightened. That boy is crippled for life. And that man on the train, he died for a principle. A man killed for a principle. One of them is wrong, but which one?
James Ewell Brown 'Jeb' Stuart: Who knows the answer to that, Kit. Everybody in America is trying to decide.
Kit Carson Holliday: Yes, by words from the east, and by guns from the west. But one day, the words will turn into guns.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening card: "1854, THE UNITED STATES MILITARY ACADEMY, WEST POINT When the gray cradle of the American Army was only a small garrison with few cadets, but under a brilliant Commandant, named Robert E. Lee it was already building for the defense of a newly-won nation in a new world." See more »


Featured in Golden Saddles, Silver Spurs (2000) See more »


The Battle Hymn of the Republic
Music by William Steffe (circa 1856)
Played during the opening credits
Variations played as background music often
See more »

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User Reviews

An Insidious Travesty
27 July 1999 | by (Brooklyn NY) – See all my reviews

I COULD call this "a typical rousing Hollywood actioner" - but I won't. This is an insidious movie that pollutes History even more than normal Hollywood fare. It had nothing to do with "The Santa Fe Trail", but dealt with abolitionist John Brown from Kansas to Harpers Ferry in the years before the Civil War, and the reaction of West Point officers to him. So what's wrong with it? It is nothing but pro-Slaveholder anti-black propaganda. 1. Atrocities by pro-slavery forces in Kansas were never depicted, just those by Brown. 2. Brown was never shown treating blacks with respect and as equals. As he always did. 3. Blacks were only depicted as shiftless, helpless stereotypes. 4. One third of Brown's fighters at Harpers Ferry were black - none were depicted in the movie. 5. The assault against Brown at Harpers was preposterous - about six times the size of the actual fight. 6. West Point cadets were shown as mostly pro-slavery, and abolitionist cadets were depicted as crackpots and the cause of the Civil War. 7. John Brown's famous and magnificent speech before the Court was not shown. 8. John Brown was denounced as a "traitor" - by the Robert E Lee character who would soon renounce his West Point oath and fight against the United States - UNlike many other Virginia officers. I could go on. But this movie should only be shown in a classroom as an example of propaganda and deceit.

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