The adventures of Ben Cartwright and his sons as they run and defend their ranch while helping the surrounding community.

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1973   1972   1971   1970   1969   1968   … See all »
Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 9 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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Storyline

The Cartwright's one-thousand square mile Ponderosa Ranch is located near Virginia City, Nevada, site of the Comstock Silver Lode, during and after the Civil War. Each of the sons was born to a different wife of Ben's; none of the mothers is still alive. Adventures are typical western ones, with lots of personal relationships/problems thrown in as well. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

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Genres:

Western

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

12 September 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ponderosa  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(430 episodes)

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Aspect Ratio:

4:3
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The last 14 episodes of Season One and the first 17 episodes of Season Two have fallen into the public domain. These 31 episodes have been released by many different companies in many different configurations, usually with the familiar theme music replaced with generic music. Starting with episode 1.19, the 31 episodes in order are: "The Gunmen", "The Fear Merchants", "The Spanish Grant", "Blood on the Land", "Desert Justice", "The Stranger", "Escape to Ponderosa", "The Avenger", "The Last Trophy", "San Francisco Holiday" (aka "San Francisco"), "Bitter Water", "Feet of Clay", "Dark Star", "Death at Dawn", "Showdown", "The Mission", "Badge Without Honor", "The Mill", "The Hopefuls", "Denver McKee", "Day of Reckoning", "The Abduction", "Breed of Violence", "The Last Viking", "The Trail Gang", "The Savage", "Silent Thunder", "The Ape", "The Blood Line", "The Courtship" and "The Spitfire". See more »

Goofs

During the first season opening credits, the Cartwrights can be seen galloping on horses on a dirt road that contains an unmistakable set of tire tracks from the truck carrying the camera in front of them. See more »

Quotes

Adam Cartwright: Let's go back to the Ponderosa, Pa. This isn't any of our affair.
Ben Cartwright: We can't ignore the rest of the world. We're the only stabilizing influence in the country.
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Crazy Credits

In the opening sequence, when the actors ride on their horses towards the camera and are introduced, the order in which they are introduced is never consistent - this was most likely done to prevent a single actor from becoming the "main" star of the show. See more »

Connections

Referenced in De jaren stillekes: Episode #1.4 (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Bonanza
Written by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The second longest running TV Western
19 January 2001 | by (Chapel Hill,North Carolina) – See all my reviews

As a child growing up,I can recall seeing every episode at least a dozen number of times and can fondly recognize all the characters on the show. "Bonanza" was that show. For the 14 years that it ran on NBC,it has become television's second longest running western series,and the only TV show that was presented in "living color" throughout its run. The show was the equilavent of My Three Sons,with the exception that it was in the rolling hills of Nevada during the turn of the 1800's. Only during its run that Lorne Greene and Michael Landon were the original two cast members that stayed on the series in which Landon produced and directed several of the episodes. Only two other members left the show at the peak of their fame when it was in the top ten for the duration of the show(which was #1 in the Nielsen ratings during much of the 1960's). Pernell Roberts,who played big brother Adam left in 1965,and Dan Blocker who played the mighty Hoss left in 1972 due to health problems. Repeats of the series can be seen on PAX-TV along with the lost episodes that date back to the early 1970's. A Must See!


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