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The Virginian


NBC Network
1962- 1971
90 Minutes

James Drury starred as The Virginian, a mysterious 1890s Wyoming drifter who took a job as foreman at the Shiloh Ranch in Medicine Bow owned by Judge Henry Garth (Lee J. Cobb). Doug McClure costarred as Trampas, an amiable but headstrong assistant foreman.

Friends and acquaintances of Shiloh Ranch included:

The Family Members:

  • Roberta Shore as Betsy Garth, the Judge's adopted daughter. She eventually got married and moved to Pennsylvania.
  • Diane Roter as Jennifer Sommers, the Judge's orphaned niece.
  • Charles Bickford as John Grainger, the second owner of the Shiloh ranch. He purchased the ranch after Judge Garth became territorial Governor.
  • Sara Lane as Elizabeth Grainger, as John's granddaughter.
  • Don Quine as Stacey Grainger, John's grandson
  • John McIntire as Clay Grainger, John's brother who became the third owner of the ranch.
  • Jeanette Nolan as Holly Grainger, Clay's wife.
  • Stewart Granger as Colonel Alan MacKenzie, an Englishman who became the fourth owner of the Shiloh Ranch.

Judge Garth, The Virginian, and Trampas
Judge Garth, The Virginian and Trampas

The Ranch Hands:

  • John Dehner as Morgan Starr. He was given control of the Shiloh ranch when Judge Garth was appointed territorial governor of Wyoming. Soon after, the ranch was sold to John Grainger, the second owner of the Shiloh spread.
  • Gary Clarke as Steve Hill
  • Randy Boone as Randy Benton.
  • Jan Stine as Eddie
  • L.Q. Jones as Belden
  • Cecil Combs as Cecil
  • Jean Peloquin as Gene
  • Lee Majors as Roy Tate
  • Tim Matheson as Jim Horn
  • David Hartman as David Sutton
  • Harper Flaherty as Harper

The Lawmen:

  • Ross Elliott as Sheriff Mark Abbott
  • Clu Gulager as Deputy (later Sheriff) Emmett Ryker
  • Harlan Warde as Sheriff Brannon.
  • Douglas Fowley as Sheriff Ben Tolliver
  • Guy Wilkerson as Sheriff of Jackson City
  • Bradford Dillman as Sheriff O'Dell (aka "Deke Slaughter")
  • Michael Ansara as Marshal Merle Frome
  • Jess Kirkpatrick as Marshal Dawes
  • Ken Mayer as Deputy Clay Friendly
  • Richard Garland as Deputy
  • Ron Soble as Deputy Wainright
  • Buck Taylor as Deputy Plumb
  • Michael Stanwood as Deputy
  • Jeff Scott as Deputy Cal Brown
  • Clancy Cooper as Deputy Joe Webb
  • John Cliff as Bounty Hunter
  • Philip Carey as Captain Edward Parmalee

Other folks in the region:


  • True Boardman as Bank Manager
  • Henry Hunter as Banker
  • James Nusser as Bank Clerk
  • Ted Jordan as Bank Teller 
  • Francis De Sales as Banker


  • Frank Sully as Danny the Bartender
  • Stuart Nisbet as Bart the Bartender
  • Walter Coy as Bartender
  • Bill Erwin as Bartender
  • Bob Kline as Bartender
  • Leo Gordon as Bartender
  • Barry Cahill as Bartender
  • Russ Bender as Bartender
  • Harry Harvey as Bartender

Businessmen (Miscellaneous):

  • Bobs Watson as Clerk
  • Ollie O'Toole as Assayer
  • Norman Leavitt as Storekeeper
  • Pitt Herbert as Telegrapher
  • John Harmon as Auctioneer
  • Than Wyenn as Blacksmith
  • Mark Tapscott as Blacksmith
  • Jimmy Lee Cook as Blacksmith

Citizens (The Locals)

  • Roy Engel as Barney Wingate
  • Dick Shane as Dick
  • Lew Brown as Dink
  • Diane Roter as Jennifer Sommers 
  • Ed Prentiss as Carl Jensen
  • Edward Faulkner as Proctor
  • Albert Salmi as Quinn
  • Ricardo Montalban as Enrique Cuellar
  • Slim Pickens as Hogy
  • Peter Brown as Chad Cooper
  • Hugh Beaumont as Charles Martin
  • Barry Sullivan as Frank Dawson

Court Officials:

  • Russell Thorson as Judge
  • Walter Woolf King as Judge
  • Gilbert Green as Judge Porter
  • Robert Cornthwaite as Judge
  • E.G. Marshall as Judge Carver
  • Joseph Cotten as Judge Hobbs
  • Austin Green as Baliff
  • Simon Scott as District Attorney

Church Officials:

  •  Edward Colmans as Father Blaise
  •  Dean Harens as Minister


  • John Bryant as Dr. Spaulding
  • Steve Forrest as Dr. William 'Will' C. Martin
  • Vaughn Taylor as Doc Kane
  • Charles H. Radilak as Doctor
  • Clarke Gordon as Doctor
  • Orville Sherman as Doctor
  • Charles Seel as Doctor
  • Dabbs Greer as Doc
  • Tol Avery as Coroner
  • Michael Fox as Coroner

Hotel Workers:

  • Sam Edwards as Hotel Clerk
  • Jonathan Hole as Hotel Clerk
  • Dale Johnson as Hotel Clerk
  • Ben Wright as Hotel Clerk Moore


  • Pippa Scott as Molly Wood, the publisher of the Medicine Bow Banner  newspaper which she inherited from her father.
  • Jimmy Joyce as the Editor of the Buffalo Herald
  • Dennis McCarthy as Editor


  • Richard Carlson as Major Ralph Forrester
  • Bernie Hamilton as Corporal Harvey
  • Ed Binns as Colonel John Briscoe
  • Harry Lauter as Captain Sam Harris
  • James Whitmore as Captain. Piper Pritican
  • Michael Forest as Cavalry Lieutenant
  • Scott Perry as Drill Sergeant

Native Americans:

  • Ken Renard as Chief Iron Hands
  • Steve Ihnat as Four-Eyes
  • Fred Carson as Cut Hand
  • Eddie Little Sky as Cut Knife
  • Rodd Redwing as Black Feather's Brave
  • Carlos Rivas as Nakona
  • Pilar Seurat as Hapamawa
  • X. Brands as Commanche Lookout


  • John Zaremba as Mayor
  • Barry Kelley as Commissioner Todd

Transportation Workers:

  • Barry Brooks as Conductor
  • David McMahon as Conductor
  • Davis Roberts as Station Master
  • Stephen Coit as Station Master
  • Boyd Stockman as Stagecoach Driver

Screen Captures - Series Opening
Listen to Theme Song


TRIVIA NOTE:  The series was the first 90 minute TV western. It was based on the 1902 novel "The Virginian" by Owen Wister. The show's title changed to MEN FROM SHILOH during the 1970-71 season for the final twenty-three episodes. The theme for the series was composed by Percy Faith.


On the series final season (episode "Holocaust"), the Shiloh Ranch house burned to the ground but it was rebuilt with the help of The Virginian, Trampas and the fourth owner, Colonel Alan MacKenzie.

In 1958, James Drury starred in an unsuccessful pilot for THE VIRGINIAN in which he played a Southern dandy with lace cuffs and a tiny pistol and a degree in veterinary science. Robert Burton played the Judge who owned the ranch.

A number of movie actors had played the role of The Virginian  including, Dusty Farnum (1914), Kenneth Harlan (1923), Gary Cooper (1929), and Joel McCrea (1946), and a TV-Movie with Bill Pullman (2000).

Obituaries: Doug McClure: 02/05/1995; Lee J. Cobb: 02/11/1976; Ross Elliott: 08/12/1999; Harper Flaherty: 08/04/1993; John McIntire: 01/30/1991; Charles Bickford: 11/09/1967; Jeanette Nolan: 06/05/1998; John Bryant: 07/13/1989; Frank Sully: 12/17/1975; Stewart Grainger: 08/16/1993;

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