The Waltons: Season 1, Episode 21

The Scholar (22 Feb. 1973)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama | Family | Romance
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 39 users  
Reviews: 2 user

When Verdie Grant learns her daughter is graduating from college, she feels embarrassed by the fact that she never learned to read or write. She asks John-Boy to teach her, on the condition that he keeps it a secret.



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Title: The Scholar (22 Feb 1973)

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Episode credited cast:
Olivia Walton (as Miss Michael Learned)
Erin Walton (as Mary Elizabeth McDonough)
Eric Scott ...
David W. Harper ...
Jim-Bob Walton (as David Harper)
Earl Hamner Jr. ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Kerry MacLane ...
Henry Wagaman


When Verdie Grant learns her daughter is graduating from college, she feels embarrassed by the fact that she never learned to read or write. She asks John-Boy to teach her, on the condition that he keeps it a secret.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Family | Romance




Release Date:

22 February 1973 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


John McGreevey, whose contributed many scripts to this series, was awarded an Emmy for Outstanding Writing Achievement in Drama for this episode. See more »


James Robert 'Jim Bob' Walton: Daddy?
John Walton, Sr.: Yeah, Jim Bob?
James Robert 'Jim Bob' Walton: Will you wake me when you get up in the morning?
John Walton, Sr.: Sure thing. Big plans for tomorrow?
James Robert 'Jim Bob' Walton: Um hmmm. Elizabeth and I are gonna dig a hole straight through to China and I wanna get an early start.
John Walton, Sr.: Good night, Jim Bob.
James Robert 'Jim Bob' Walton: Good night, Daddy.
See more »

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User Reviews

Not Bad
28 February 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This episode aired on February 22nd 1973 with these opening words. When I was growing up on Waltons Mountain, the Great Depression touched our lives in many ways. Jobs were scarce, new clothes were rare; food was simple and mostly homegrown. What we had, we shared. My father taught us by his quiet practice that sharing was our first duty and happiest privilege and on one occasion, I had the opportunity to share an unforgettable experience with a woman who was trying to hide a secret. Verdie Grant, a neighbor of the Walton family, is illiterate, a fact that she has tried to keep a secret. Her daughter is about to graduate from college though, and she plans to go to visit for the graduation, and wants nothing more than to be able to sign her name on the register, and be able to read the menu when she goes out to dinner. She sees how patient John-Boy is when he is teaching Elizabeth to read and write and feels that he will be the perfect teacher for her. Her chance comes when Olivia and Esther go visiting relatives for a wedding and Erin becomes sick and needs her tonsils removed. Verdie is asked to look after Erin while the women of the family are away. John-Boy begins teaching her how to read and write as part of a game of playing school with Elizabeth. Verdie eventually does tell John-Boy the truth, and the two continue with their lessons, with John-Boy under strict instructions not to tell anybody. Word does get back to Verdie though, when Elizabeth tells her schoolteacher, Miss Hunter, that she couldn't do her homework because John-Boy was using her book to teach Mrs. Grant to read. Is John Boy able to Verdie how to read and write? Does Verdie get to go to her daughter's graduation? This episode was not so bad and I give this 5 weasel stars.

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