A baby girl sure has a rough start when she arrives on the stage with her dead mother. Plague is what people think killed her and then Charlie Wooster steps in to try to help - and well, you can imagine where it went from there.
A stage rolls into Apache Flats with a dead woman on it. Saloon owner Casey thinks she died of bubonic plague and forces the stage to leave town with the woman but minus her luggage. They find a baby girl in the "luggage". Although Casey wants to get rid of the baby, saloon worker Flo takes the baby with her. Wooster and Hawks arrive for supplies but Wooster goes to Casey's saloon for a "single" drink. After learning about the baby, he overhears two men arguing about who will kill the "kid" meaning a baby goat for a celebration. Wooster thinking they mean the baby decides to steal the baby taking her to the wagon train. Hawks and Adams notice him acting strange after they return with Hawks eventually finding the baby but he keeps Wooster's secret. A Sheriff arrives at Apache Flats with the baby's grandfather looking for the baby. Casey takes them to the wagon train where Wooster's attachment to the baby causes him to try to runoff with the baby. The men follow Wooster who finally ... Written by
"The Charlene Brenton Story," which aired 51 years ago today, is a story about an orphaned baby found on a stagecoach with her dead mother. When the bartender, played by Sean McClory, determines the mother died from the plague, those in the town determine that they must get rid of the baby, who presumably is also stricken.
Enter Charlie Wooster.
While a bar fight ensues, Charlie makes off with the baby, whom he first thinks is a boy. When he finds she is a girl, he calls her Mary and tends to the baby. What follows is a superb human interest story, and a touching one at that.
While Ward Bond is the featured lead actor, this episode really belongs to Frank McGrath, who managed to stay with the series for its entire eight-year run. Whether it was this series, or "Tammy," which he had a prominent supporting role in, he commands the small screen. Watch also for Raymond Bailey, in a pre-"Beverly Hillbillies" role as the baby's grandfather.
When "Wagon Train" showed fighting against Native Americans, it did not make for good viewing. Thankfully, this is the sort of episode that shows the series' greatness. And this episode is a gem.
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