The Virginian (1962–1971)
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Gunman Frank Hammel's arrival on the stage upsets people in Medicine Bow who believe he may be after them. Having saved The Virginian's life ten years earlier, The Virginian takes an active role in calming fears and stopping any killing.


Joel Rogosin


John Kneubuhl, Owen Wister (novel)




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
John McIntire ... Clay Grainger (credit only)
Doug McClure ... Trampas (credit only)
David Hartman ... David Sutton (credit only)
Sara Lane ... Elizabeth Grainger (credit only)
James Drury ... The Virginian
Herb Jeffries ... Frank Hammel
Jan Shepard Jan Shepard ... Laura Cooper
John Kellogg ... Mel Dover
Jay C. Flippen ... Judge
William Fawcett ... Clem
Douglas Henderson Douglas Henderson ... Ben Cooper
John McLiam ... Carl O'Neill
Kevin Hagen ... Albert Morgan
Frances Spanier Frances Spanier ... Mrs. Perry
Myron Healey ... 2nd Drifter


Frank Hammel known as a gunman arrives on the stage in Medicine Bow shortly after The Virginian arrives in town. When the people of Medicine Bow learn of Hammel's arrival, many of the residents with skeletons in their closets believe he is after them. Having saved The Virginian's life ten years earlier, The Virginian visits Hammel at the hotel. Hammel tells The Virginian that he is waiting for the 2:30 pm stage but the Virginian believes he is after someone. One by one Hammel indicates he is not after various citizens of Medicine Bow. Visits to the general store and saloon has various residents scared and results in Hammel winging a man in the arm with a shot. With the sheriff out of town on business, The Virginian makes repeated visits to the local Judge looking for a way to restrain Hammel until the stage leaves but he fails. Hammel's question about and later visit with Mel Dover ultimately leads The Virginian to the name of the person Hammel is looking for. However, The Virginian ... Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

8 January 1969 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


When Frank approaches the two boys by the church, a modern high tension steel power line tower can be seen at the top of the hill between that church and the building on the left. A later closing shot reveals this hydro tower again for about five seconds. See more »

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User Reviews

Atypical gunman
17 May 2013 | by pfors-647-501497See all my reviews

Herb Jeffries, forever etched in western movie history as the first black singing cowboy, plays notorious gunslinger Frank Hammel in this smart, subtle episode. Frank is not the typical, moody gun hawk viewers expect. He's friendly and courteous, never making an aggressive move or hostile gesture. Yet he's feared, and shunned. A mother forbids her child to accept candy from him. A saloon patron demands that the bartender refuse service to him. When a character finally cuts loose with "we don't want his kind in this town," it becomes apparent that an undercurrent is flowing beneath the story's surface that the writer didn't need to clarify.

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