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Ben's eldest son Adam moved to Australia when Pernel Roberts wanted to move on in his acting carreer. Hoss died in an accident after the untimely death of Dan Blocker.
Season one's episode 18 "A House Divided" reveals Little Joe's full name to be "Joseph Francis Cartwright".
He claimed that he was very disappointed and disenchanted with the overall direction and writing of the show. Roberts didn't care for his Adam character having to ask his father for permission being an adult, the eldest
Cartwright son and also the most educated with an architectural degree. Now imagine a grown man having to say "yes Pa, no Pa!" Sounds quite silly! While his brothers Hoss and Joe had minimal education. Its interesting to note that after the fifth season, all of the cast were negotiating new contracts with hefty salary increases for additional seasons. Lorne Greene, Dan Blocker and Michael Landon all signed for five more seasons with an increase of pay from $5,000 per episode to $8,000 (which, after adjusting for inflation, would be equivalent to $60,000 an episode in 2015.). Greene tried to persuade Pernell Roberts to do the same because by sticking with Bonanza then he'd be financially set for life. Roberts opted to sign only for the sixth season and to leave the show afterwards. His costars eventually became millionaires and Roberts missed out on this lucrative windfall. The writers left open the possibility of Adam's return for future storylines though this never came about since Roberts never returned to the show. Many years after leaving Bonanza, Pernell Roberts expressed sincere regrets on his leaving the show as he felt that the media coverage of his departure had left his fans with a very negative impression of him. He did eulogize his former costar Victor Sen Yung at his funeral in 1980 as he felt that it was the right thing to do at the time.
No, due to the ongoing slide in prime time ratings in season 14. NBC decided to pull the plug around halfway through the 1972-1973 season and so Bonanza left the airwaves permanently without any kind of final wrap up episode. Dan Blocker died toward the end of the next to last season in May 1972 and so the character of Hoss was written out by the following season by having him die in an accident in one episode and so by the time of the final season only Lorne Greene, Michael Landon and Victor Sen Yung remained from the original cast.
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