Little House on the Prairie: Season 2, Episode 18

The Long Road Home (3 Mar. 1976)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama | Family | Romance
7.5
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When their grain doesn't sell for enough to see their families through the winter, Charles and Isaiah hire on with the railroad to haul a wagon-load of highly explosive nitroglycerin over a... See full summary »

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(developed for television by), (based upon the series of books "Little House" by), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Long Road Home (03 Mar 1976)

The Long Road Home (03 Mar 1976) on IMDb 7.5/10

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Carrie Ingalls (as Lindsay Sidney Greenbush)
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Carrie Ingalls (as Lindsay Sidney Greenbush)
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Murphy
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Henry Hill (as Lou Gossett)
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Brian Part ...
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Sam Benson
Bill Quinn ...
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When their grain doesn't sell for enough to see their families through the winter, Charles and Isaiah hire on with the railroad to haul a wagon-load of highly explosive nitroglycerin over a treacherous mountain road and, as their journey progresses, find themselves dealing with situations almost as volatile as the freight they so carefully carry. Written by shepherd1138

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3 March 1976 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Isaiah Edwards: Better get a good night's sleep. I have a feeling the next ten days will feel like an eternity.
Charles Ingalls: Just might be.
Isaiah Edwards: Huh...
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Another Way to Earn Money
30 March 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Charles and Edwards thought they had it made. They had enough wheat for to take to market and make a bundle of money. The problem was: so did everyone else. Because there was so much wheat, the bottom fell out of the price and they found the wheat being bought at a price that wouldn't even begin to get their families through a winter.

For the second time, Charles has to leave home to find work. In this episode, they get pretty lucky. They find a job for the railroad - but it's a pretty dangerous job and would get a hundred dollars to haul nitro for two weeks. Back then, I guess that was a lot of money. Today, I'd croak if a dangerous job like that would yield so little!

Charles doesn't tell Caroline what he'll be hauling, and Edwards doesn't tell his family. But when they get life insurance policies to send home to their wives, they immediately realize what's going on. Then the worrying starts.

There's a sub-plot of racial discrimination in this episode. One of the freighters, a black man, is accepted by Charles and Isaiah, of course. But the other man refuses to go. The boss lets the man know his choices: either he goes with the black man (who is very nice and very forgiving) or he gets a ride back to the train and goes back home.

There are a few tense moments as the temperature gets warmer and the trail they take gets rougher. Unlike The Big Valley, the episode is pretty tame in the outcome. If you're looking for a good, exciting nitro episode watch The Big Valley. If your looking for a sweet, tender hearted "alls well that ends well" sort of episode, this is the one for you!


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