Christian Horn is member of an 1847 wagon train headed west. They are 1500 miles from St. Louis and are now in the New Mexico desert. Many in the wagon train are ready to turn back but Chris wants everyone to persevere. His son has had a fever for 11 days now and Chris goes off looking for water, only 100 yards or so from the others and suddenly finds himself in the present day. He can't quite bring himself to believe what he sees or where he is but those he meets believe he's a man from the past. The trip in time does have one positive outcome. Written by
Christian Horn, Jr. was born in 1839 and died in 1914. See more »
This story is set in 1847, and Christian Horn is carrying a Trap Door Springfield Rifle made in 1884. See more »
The year is 1847, the place is the territory of New Mexico, the people are a tiny handful of men and women with a dream. Eleven months ago, they started out from Ohio and headed west. Someone told them about a place called California, about a warm sun and a blue sky, about rich land and fresh air, and at this moment, almost a year later, they've seen nothing but cold, heat, exhaustion, hunger, and sickness. This man's name is Christian Horn. He has a dying eight-year old son ...
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A family traveling west in hopes of striking it rich in a mysterious paradise that they've heard about called California suffers more and more every day, until they can think of nothing but the heat and thirst and sickness that they deal with on a daily basis. Serling gives us a pretty obvious story where he imagines what would have happened if one of those people traveling west all those years ago were to have been able to experience modern convenience for just one afternoon during that torturous journey.
It's not the wildest stretch of the imagination as far as a story idea, but the entertainment is high and the performances are some of the best I've seen so far in the series. The couple in the diner hit the nail right on the head with their subdued reactions to the strange stranger's story, not sure to react with shock or to hide their surprise from someone who must be a little crazy.
There's a cute twist at the end and an interesting paradox that calls your attention of the episode thus far into question, the time travel is not presented as anything more than simply walking over a sand bank, and the 100-years-in-the-future theme is done again the following week, but this is an excellent example of how good the twilight zone can be.
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