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The Gun That Won the West (1955)

Approved | | Adventure, Western | 1 September 1955 (USA)
In the late 1880s, Colonel Carrington and his command are assigned the job of constructing a chain of forts in the Sioux Indian territory - of Wyoming. Carrington recruits former cavalry ... See full summary »



(story and screenplay) (as James B. Gordon)

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Cast overview:
Mrs. Max Gaines
'Dakota' Jack Gaines
Chris O'Brien ...
Sgt. Timothy Carnahan
Michael Morgan ...
Roy Gordon ...
Colonel Carrington
Howard Wright ...
General Pope


In the late 1880s, Colonel Carrington and his command are assigned the job of constructing a chain of forts in the Sioux Indian territory - of Wyoming. Carrington recruits former cavalry scouts Jim Bridger and "Dakota Jack" Gaines to lead the project. Bridger and Gaines are friendly with Sioux Chief Red Cloud, and they feel a peace treaty with the Indians can be made. If an Indian war breaks out, the cavalry is depending on getting a new type of Springfield rifle. Bridger, Gaines and Gaines wife, Maxine, arrive at the fort for the conference. Gaines, in a drunken fit, tries to intimidate the Indians into signing a treaty. Chief Red Cloud threatens war if his territory is invaded by any troops building forts. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

fort | troop | wyoming | scout | rifle | See All (54) »


When a new kind of weapon wrote history in the Old West!


Adventure | Western


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

1 September 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Conquista do Oeste  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Indian horses all appear to have regular saddles under their blankets. See more »


Referenced in Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

The gun that lost the audience
31 May 2015 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

William Castle who directed some interesting if gimmicky fright films is at the helm of The Gun That Won The West. This account of Red Cloud's war with the USA in the post Civil War years is one cheap production with some very bored actors giving some very pedestrian performances.

The same criticism I had of the film Tomahawk where Van Heflin played Jim Bridger applies here as well. Dennis Morgan plays the famous frontier scout and mountain man whose best days in the 1860s were far behind him. Bridger was in his sixties suffering from a variety of health issues of which arthritis was the most prominent. Hardly a western hero at that point of his life. Nor was he ever involved with Wild West Shows which started a decade or so after the years this film was set in.

Morgan and married friends Richard Denning and Paula Raymond are busy with a wild west show where the drunken and dissolute Denning is unable to perform in any number of ways. Still they get a mission and drop the wild west show and go to Dakota Territory to help the army conduct a string of forts. That does not sit well with Red Cloud and the Sioux and war breaks out.

Denning's character is poorly written. For the first half of the film he's a drunken bum. Then for no apparent reason he becomes the real hero of the piece. As for Paula Raymond she follows Tammy Wynette's advice and stands by her man even though Morgan is more appealing.

The title refers to the army's new Springfield Rifles. But The Gun That Won The West has lost its audience long before the film ends.

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