Wagon Train (1957–1965)
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The Ben Engel Story 

Wealthy Engel has used psychopathic Harry Diel as a proxy during the Civil War to save Diel from jail but Diel plots on the train as Engel's employee to usurp Engel's business by making himself appear a cuckold to Engel among other wiles.





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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
... Christopher Hale
... Cooper Smith
... Duke Shannon (as Scott Miller)
... Charlie Wooster
... Bill Hawks
... Harry Diel
... Ben Engel
... Eve Diel
... Barnaby West
... Mac McLeod
... Matt Wilson (as Elisha Cook)
... Benjie Diel
... Judge Hiram Larkin
... Mr. Jenks
... Mrs. Jenks


A large rainstorm has caused a major river to flood which worries Chris Hale as it will cause the wagon train to be halted for at least two days while they wait for the water to go down and the river become safe to cross. His primary concern is that when the people have time on their hands it leads to problems. He senses the people are anxious so he decides to put on a dance to divert the attention. Wealthy businessman Ben Engel is moving his store to the west along with his employee Harry Diel and his beautiful wife Eve Diel and their son Benjie. Ben stayed out of the Civil War by paying Harry to substitute to keep Harry out of jail as his wife was pregnant. Harry became a war hero winning a major medal while his wife lived with Ben. Coop has heard during the war that Harry was really a cold blooded killer. This comes out when Harry shoots Mac McLeod during a craps game as part of his scheme to steal Ben's business during the dance as his true personality is revealed. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

16 March 1964 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Grover Cleveland redux
18 February 2018 | by See all my reviews

Clu Gulager and John Doucette who both made several Wagon Train episodes are together in this story with Doucette in the title role. Doucette did something that got Grover Cleveland in a political jackpot , he paid a substitute to fight for him. One could do that during the Civil War. Doucette was three days short of 45 when the draft was instituted, a wealthy merchant with no family. He pays Gulager to substitute and Gulager goes on to be a hero with a medal from the Wilderness campaign. What their relationship is and its dynamics is the crux of this episode.

I could identify with Doucette. My granduncle, my grandmother's brother was 44 and unmarried and he had in fact served in World War I. He got a draft notice for the second war. You can imagine it upset him., fortunately he stayed stateside during WW2. Doucette was 3 days short of 45.

Gulager is married and his pregnant wife Katherine Crawford stayed with Doucette during the war and gave birth to their child who grew up to be Darby Hinton.

Gulager is one of those amoral and irretrievably evil people. He really enjoyed the war, he could kill legally. Some are like that. He also had a bad leg and walked with a limp. But physical standards weren't quite as high back in the day. Sergeant Boston Corbett who shot John Wilkes Booth in that burning barn where he was cornered had castrated himself and the Union Army took him, he even enlisted.

Gulager's performance will really creep you out. This is a Wagon Train episode with no happy ending other than the world was better off without Clu Gulager.

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