- Cimarron Strip
Cimarron Strip Genre Western Created by Christopher Knopf Starring Stuart Whitman Theme music composer Maurice Jarre Composer(s) see Episode list Country of origin United States Language(s) English No. of seasons 1 No. of episodes 23 Episode list Production Executive producer(s) Philip Leacock Producer(s) Douglas Benton
Stuart Whitman (uncredited)
Editor(s) Donald W. Ernst
Danny B. Landres
Howard A. Smith
Cinematography Monroe P. Askins
Harry Stradling, Jr.
Running time 72 mins Broadcast Original channel CBS Picture format Film 35mm 4:3 Color Audio format Monaural Original run September 7, 1967 – March 7, 1968
Cimarron Strip is an American Western television series that aired on CBS from September 1967 to March 1968. Starring Stuart Whitman as Marshal Jim Crown, the series was produced by the creators of Gunsmoke. The show had a brief return of sorts when reruns of the original show were aired in the summer of 1971.
Cimarron Strip was one of only three 90 minute weekly Western series that aired during the 1960s (the others being The Virginian and, for one season, Wagon Train), and the only 90 minute series of any kind to be centered primarily around one lead character. Cimarron Strip was set in the Oklahoma Panhandle, which comprises, east to west, Beaver, Texas, and Cimarron counties. The show is set in 1888, just as the continuous frontier of the West, which once ran from the Canadian to the Mexican border, was closing. In less than five years there would no longer be that "continuous frontier," only pockets of undeveloped land. This was the late "Wild West" which Marshall Jim Crown was called to defend.
In the late 1880s, the Cherokee Outlet across the Cimarron River was the last free homestead land in America. Before U.S. Marshal Jim Crown (Stuart Whitman), having led a rather wild life and cleaned up Abilene was assigned to Cimarron (one of the towns in the Cimarron Strip), the outlet had been leased and controlled by cattlemen, but the local farmers were expecting authorities in Washington to send news that they would be given rights to the land, for which they had been campaigning. Crown arrives to find that the sheriff has resigned, leaving Crown on his own to settle the increasing unrest caused by the news he brings - the cattlemen's leases have been revoked and a final decision on the land is postponed indefinitely. With no sheriff and no support from Army troops, Crown is on his own to keep law and order in this borderland between the Kansas Territory and Indian Territory.
Dulcey Coopersmith (Jill Townsend), born in England in 1869, arrives in Cimarron City on the same train as Marshal Crown, two months after her mother's death in Providence. Dulcey worked as an upstairs maid and travelled to Cimarron to be with her father she had not seen since the age of five, only to discover he had been killed by a beer wagon.
Another friend of Dulcey's father was Francis Wilde (Randy Boone), born in St. Louis and trying to make his way in the world as a reporter and photographer.
- Stuart Whitman as Marshal Jim Crown
- Jill Townsend as Dulcey Coopersmith.
- Percy Herbert as MacGregor
- Randy Boone as Francis Wilde
- Karl Swenson as Doctor Kihlgren
- Jack Braddock as Fabrizio the bartender of the Wayfarers Inn
- Andrew Duggan as Maj. Ben Covington of the nearest Army fort
Cimarron Strip was created (though he only received "developed by" credit) by Christopher Knopf, who also served as supervising producer. Philip Leacock was executive producer. The series was produced in association with The Stuart Whitman Organisation (Stuart Whitman, Inc. on later episodes).
Set in Oklahoma, the series was shot at CBS Studio Center in Studio City. Other shooting locations included the Alabama Hills near Lone Pine, California; Bishop, California; Kanab, Utah; and Tucson, Arizona.
Unlike with the producers' other series, Gunsmoke, critics routinely singled out the comparatively weak supporting cast.
The actual running time of each 90-minute episode, less the commercials, was 72 minutes. With 23 episodes filmed, 27.6 hours of Cimarron Strip exists.
Cimarron Strip aired on Thursdays opposite ABC's The Flying Nun, Batman and Bewitched, and NBC's Daniel Boone and Ironside. Due to low ratings coupled with high production costs, the series was canceled after just one season.
Episode # Prod # Title Directed by Written by Original airdate Music 1 0707 "Journey to a Hanging" Vincent McEveety Jack Curtis (teleplay), Mel Goldberg and Jack Curtis (story) September 7, 1967 Morton Stevens A bank robber is killed in the Cimarron jail by his own boss, Coffin, and in the adjoining cell is Screamer, who offers to assist Crown in tracking down Coffin. In the pursuit, Crown and Screamer make some unlikely alliances, but who can Crown trust when Coffin has a $10,000 price on his head. Guest stars: Gregg Palmer, John Saxon and Henry Silva 2 0702 "The Legend of Jud Starr" Vincent McEveety Richard Fielder September 14, 1967 Harry Geller Jud Starr is an outlaw made infamous by the newspapers when he robbed an army payroll of $80,000 which he hid on Indian land before being arrested. Crown and Francis are delivering prisoners to the county jail and Starr is about to be hanged when his gang free him from the hangman's noose. With the army refusing to act fearing an Indian uprising Marshal Jim Crown, MacGregor, and Francis set out to track the gang down. Knowing that Jud is protected by Indians and his own men wanting a share of the $80,000, Crown gets help from an unexpected source when the legend of Jud Starr begins to unravel. Guest stars: Darren McGavin and Beau Bridges 3 0706 "Broken Wing" Sam Wanamaker Harold Swanton September 21, 1967 George Duning High Jinx with fireworks and Jing McQueen, the drunken son of a wealthy cattleman, shoots a preacher and burns down a livery stable. The Cimarron settlers demand action. Kilgallen, a saloon-keeper with a thirst for power, and gunslinger Wiley Harpe to whom he had promised the Marshal's job before Crown was appointed, side with the settlers. When the preacher recovers and refuses to press charges, Jing is released from jail. Kilgallen and Wiley Harpe convince the settlers that Marshal Jim Crown and the preacher have sold out to the wealthy rancher, Mike McQueen refuses to face the fact that his only son is emotionally immature. By turning the settlers against Crown, Harpe and Kilgallen hope to take over the entire Cimarron Strip. Guest stars: Pat Hingle and Steve Forrest 4 0701 "The Battleground" Don Medford Christopher Knopf September 28, 1967 Maurice Jarre Dulcie finds a magazine she was reading on the train bringing her to Cimarron City and remembers when she first met fellow passenger Marshal Jim Crown assigned to keep the peace between farmers and cattlemen and prevent encroachment into the Cherokee outlet. Cattle boss Miller who has had his lease revoked fires his workers knowing their leader 'Bear' will cause trouble and turn the Cimarron river bloody red. Guest stars: Telly Savalas, Warren Oates, and Andrew Duggan. This was the pilot episode. 5 0717 "The Hunted" Alvin Ganzer Richard Fielder October 5, 1967 Morton Stevens Felix Guage has written to the circuit judge and Marshall Crown convinces the gunslinging Gauge brothers that they will receive a fair trial if they turn themselves in, but their reputation link them with many crimes they deny committing. While Crown investigates these alleged crimes a wealthy rancher, Buckman decides to seek gun justice for his dead son and hires a pair of bounty hunters to exact retribution. Felix wants a new life for his younger brother Gene but is he involved with the alleged crimes? Guest stars: David Carradine, Dennis Cross, and James Gregory 6 0705 "The Battle of Bloody Stones" Richard C. Sarafian Jack Curtis October 12, 1967 Morton Stevens A Wild West Show featuring the Battle of Bloody Stones, a cavalry slaughter of Indians, is playing in Cimarron, starring impresario Wildcat Gallager. Marshal Crown watches with apprehension as three Indian lads, John Wolf, Little Crow, and Tom Penney indicate displeasure. John Wolf's father Ghost Wolf had been at the battle and told them a different story. Crown orders the show from town but Wildcat Gallager refuses and events take a turn for the worse. Guest stars: Michael J. Pollard and Elisha Cook, Jr. 7 0711 "Whitey" Herschel Daugherty Dan Ullman October 19, 1967 Harry Geller Three men rob the Cimarron Railway station and are pursued by Crown and a posse. One of the gang, Whitey, is captured. Whitey, a nineteen-year-old member of Arn Tinker's outlaw gang, is tricked by Marshal Crown into revealing the plans for Tinker's next robbery of a mine payroll. Crown then gathers all the neighboring lawmen together for an ambush, but Arn Tinker has given Whitey false information and he robs a bank in the neighboring town of Shade's Wells instead. When he returns to Cimarron City, he discovers Whitey has escaped from jail and kidnapped Dulcey. A story of double cross after double cross with Dulcey's life at stake with Crown having to trust one liar after another. Guest star: Peter Kastner 8 0703 "The Roarer" Lamont Johnson William Wood November 2, 1967 Richard Shores Sgt Bill Disher is a hell-raising cavalryman and when one of his men, Cpl. Thomas, is killed when his horse trips over a fallen telegraph wire and he splits his skull on the rail, Disher brings him to Cimarron City to be tended by the Undertaker Arliss Blynn. He bursts in on a citizens committee led by Joe Wyman wanting action against the army who he considers as bad as any outlaws. Bitter about the death of Cpl Thomas, Disher escapes town and starts destroying the telegraph wires and tries to damage the railroad tracks. Spotted by Walter Forcey, a townsman, who tries to stop him and is killed. Crown has to arrest Disher and prevent vigilantes meting out instant justice. Guest stars: Richard Boone, Robert Duvall, Andrew Duggan and Ed Flanders 9 0712 "The Search" Bernard McEveety William Wood (teleplay), Herman Miller and William Wood (story) November 9, 1967 Harry Geller Marshall Crown has Dickie Vardeman arrested for murder prisoner, and to get him on to the train to Hayes City with MacGregor and Francis, organizes a deception to trick his two brothers, Lou and Kerwin, who are determined to spring him. The deception goes wrong for Crown when he is ambushed by the brothers. Crown kills Lou but is shot by Kerwin who reports back to his father, Clo, and brother Strawdy that Crown is dead. Clo and the two sons return to the ambush to bury Lou and find the marshal's body has gone. Dulcey, frantic with worry tries to get help from the Cimarron townsmen while Clo offers $500 for Crown's body dead or alive. Guest stars: Joseph Cotten and Jim Davis 10 0713 "Till the End of the Night" Alvin Ganzer Hal Sitowitz November 16, 1967 Cyril J. Mockridge , MacGregor and Francis are left in charge of the prisoner Luther Happ. Events lead to him escaping and MacGregor not wanting to lose face follows his trail alone. Crossing the border into Texas, MacGregor is ambushed and wounded by Happ but manages to kill him, A passing wagon driver takes MacGregor and the body of Happ to Cedar County and Sheriff Jack Hawkes. The sheriff who promptly arrests MacGregor for the murder of his deputy Luther Happ and at a hastily arranged kangaroo court MacGregor is sentenced to be hung. Taken by Sheriff Hawkes and deputy Coleman in a prison wagon with a female prisoner, Sarah Lou Burke, also sentenced to be hung for murder. An unlikely friendship develops between the two prisoners and they make there escape when the wagon stops at a water hole. Chained together they try to make the safety of Cimarron City pursued by Hawkes. Guest star: Suzanne Pleshette 11 0709 "The Beast That Walks Like a Man" Charles R. Rondeau Stephen Kandel and Richard Fielder (teleplay), Stephen Kandel (story) November 30, 1967 Morton Stevens Crown and MacGregor are chasing a farmer, Waly Daggett, who has illegally crossed the Cimarron river to stake a claim. Crown and MacGregor separate and it is MacGregor who discovers his mutilated body. The newly settling Houston family don't intend to await government approval before they can stake their land claim. Enraged with anger and refusing to wait, leader Rowan Houston is arrested and jailed by Marshal Crown. The rest of the family led by Stacey Houston who was part of the family by marriage, now a widow, breaks Rowan from jail and cross the river into the Mocane Valley. Crown with Francis, MacGregor, and part Pawnee indian Walking Man form a posse but Rowan lays in wait to stop them. Guest stars: Lola Albright and Leslie Nielsen 12 0715 "Nobody" Boris Sagal Ellis Marcus (teleplay), Ellis Marcus and John D.F. Black (story) December 7, 1967 Morton Stevens Crown arrests Burke Stegman when he and his gang try to rob a wagon. When he comes to trial, Judge Quayle releases him as the victims have under intimidation left town. To celebrate getting a new job, cowhand Mobeetie rides his horse through the Wayfarer's Inn window and is held in jail overnight, he loses the job. Crown then hires Mobeetie to help unload a train wagon of dynamite but he playfully tosses a stick of dynamite to MacGregor, who is injured as the stick explodes, Crown sends Mobeetie away. Feeling unwanted Mobeetie joins a band led by Stegman planning to rob the Cimarron Bank but they need to kill Marshal Crown and Mobeetie gets the job. Guest stars: Warren Oates reprising his role as lunatic "Mobeetie" from an earlier episode and Robert Karnes as Bart Hazlett 13 0708 "The Last Wolf" Bernard McEveety Preston Wood December 14, 1967 Harry Geller When a band of wolf hunters, led by Sam Gallatin, whose very success in hunting the wolves to extinction has put them out of business becomes a problem for the settlers, cattlemen and farmers alike, of the Cimarron Strip. Crown tries to help him by getting a job as an army scout but he prefers to join his fellow hunters at a squatters camp. Broke and hungry, they resort to killing cattle for sustenance much to the annoyance of the cattlemen who mete out their own justice. Seeking revenge Gallatin convinces Charley Austin to kill cattlemen which he does being killed in the process. Marshal Crown offers them a section of land to homestead, but Sam Gallatin, believes that the life of an outlaw is preferable to that of a dirt farmer and with their hunting prowess and buffalo guns, Crown fears a bloodbath. Guest stars: Read Morgan, Albert Salmi, John M. Pickard, and Denver Pyle 14 0714 "The Deputy" Alvin Ganzer Hal Sitowitz December 21, 1967 Morton Stevens 1880 Fort Concho, Texas, an armored army wagon carrying the soldiers payroll is ambushed by a gang led by Tate Hansen. One of his men, the sadistic Buford, kills all of the army escort, another, Benji, lays a stick of dynamite to blow open the strongbox. Believing the fuse to be faulty, Bo Woodard enters the wagon as the dynamite explodes. Left for dead by the gang, Bo returns eight and a half years later to claim his share of the theft. Using the papers of a Texas deputy he killed, he gets a job as a deputy with Marshal Crown, under MacGregor's supervision, while Crown is away in Kansas City. The outlaw, unsuccessful in claiming his share of the loot, begins engineering ways of killing off his former partners, who have settled in the Cimarron Strip. His killings seem to be honestly defensive, but MacGregor is uneasy about the deaths. Guest stars: J.D. Cannon and Gregg Palmer 15 0716 "The Judgement" Robert Butler Dan Ullman January 4, 1968 Morton Stevens The town of Hardesty 40 miles west of Cimarron City. When trail boss Joe Bravo and his six men cannot furnish proper identification, the bank refuses to cash a $500 check. The men take over the bank and discover that the open vault contains $100,000 in cash. Lloyd Emmet wants to steal the money, but Joe fires him and removes only $500. Joe turns out to be an old friend of Crown's. When Judge Gilroy holds court the next day, Joe is not on trial. Crown has given him the job of deputy sheriff of Hardesty. When the judge learns that the missing prisoner has become deputy sheriff of Hardesty, he releases the other five cowboys, hoping they'll travel to Hardesty and cause trouble. Emmet hopes to recruit the released cowboys to steal the money. Guest stars: James Stacy, I. Stanford Jolley, and Don Keefer 16 0721 "Fool's Gold" Herschel Daugherty Palmer Thompson (teleplay), Palmer Thompson and David Jones (story) January 11, 1968 Leon Klatzkin 56000 dollars, the army payroll, in the care of Marshal Crown until collected by the army. Crown places the money in the Cimarron City Bank guarded by his deputies. Sam Darcy and his band of outlaws, including The Kid (Bud Mahoney) plan to steal the payroll. The gang pulls off the heist, using The Kid as a decoy using dynamite and fool's gold. Crown arrests the kid suspecting he was part of the robbery. Chasing down the other three, Crown and his posse, to a horse ranch, the escape is foiled by Grimes a cagey old horse trader. Darcy is sent to territorial prison and 10 years hard labour. Left with Bud Mahoney in the Cimarron jail with no evidence he was part of the gang, Crown arranges a job with Grimes on his horse ranch. Darcy escapes to return to Cimarron to kill Crown and Grimes but to do so enlists The Kid. Guest stars: Robert Lansing and Slim Pickens 17 0718 "Heller" Gunnar Hellstrom Austin Kalish and Irma Kalish January 18, 1968 Harry Geller A band of ruthless raiders, led by Logan Purcell mercilessly prey on isolated Indian villages in the outlet just outside of Marshal Crown's jurisdiction. After an Indian is gunned down in Cimarron City by Purcell, Marshal Crown sets out to track him down. In an ensuing shoot-out, Crown is wounded. He is found unconscious by a stream and nursed back to health by a young girl named Heller. Heller was rescued by Purcell from Indians who had taken her as a baby and considers her his property. Crown, MacGregor, and Francis seek help from the broken spirited indians to track Purcell down. Guest star: Tuesday Weld 18 07104 "Knife in the Darkness" Charles R. Rondeau Harlan Ellison January 25, 1968 Bernard Herrmann In 1888, a foggy December night following a dance a saloon girl, Josie, is butchered and Marshal Crown hunts for a killer which has similarities as Francis points out to recent killings in London by Jack the Ripper and a trail of murders across the United States leading to Cimarron City. Fear and the many suspects make the task all the more difficult with the local citizens taking the law into their own hands...and the Indians seem to be waiting??? Guest star: Tom Skeritt 19 0720 "Sound of a Drum" Gerald Mayer Victor Leslie Tracey and A.L. Christopher (teleplay), Victor Leslie Tracey (story) February 1, 1968 Harry Geller Rustlers are stealing cattle and the army and Marshal Crown can not find them despite patrolling extensively. Sergeant Tyce, a 20-year cavalry veteran popular with his men is discharged from the army after trouble with a new sergeant major, Chambers, and sets up a mock trial for the Sergeant Major. He releases his old men from an Army guardroom and uses them as the jury, holding court in the Wayfarer's Inn while Crown, MacGregor, and Francis are away, searching for the rustlers. Dulcey realizes that Tyce's hatred for Chambers has gotten out of hand, as Tyce is determined to hang chambers and she attempts to defend Chambers who refuses to run when she gives him the chance to escape. Guest star: Steve Forrest 20 0719 "Big Jessie" Herschel Daugherty Dan Mainwaring February 8, 1968 Morton Stevens While Crown is preparing to take 20 year old Bud Baylor to Silver City, New Mexico where he is wanted for robbery and murder, Bud tricks Dulcey into sending a cryptic message to his older brother Bill. Crown is bushwhacked by Bill Baylor and his partner Lobo and in the ensuing fight Bud is wounded and Crown left unconscious without any identification. Coming round Crown meets Big Jessie Cabot, a beautiful and resourceful woman and owner of a run down freight business, comes to his aide putting him on the road to Indian Wells. Crown is mistaken for the ruthless killer, Billy Baylor, who murdered an Indian Wells blacksmith in cold blood. He is "rescued" from the mob by Moon, a bounty hunter, intent on collecting the $5000 reward for Baylor in Silver City. Guest stars: Eddie Hodges and Mariette Hartley 21 0710 "The Blue Moon Train" Gerald Mayer Jack Curtis February 15, 1968 Harry Geller A-1 Joe Lehigh is known for always helping his friends and is a KSO, prison slang for First Class Outlaw. The Blue Moon Train is passing through Cimarron City with prisoners being transferred from Denver to the Atlanta state prison and Joe LeHigh has a carefully laid plan to free them by using Marshal Crown as a pawn always one step ahead. Guest stars: Broderick Crawford and Don "Red" Barry 22 0722 "Without Honor" Robert Butler Dan Ullman February 29, 1968 Morton Stevens The train arrives in Cimarron City with three soldiers. One of them, Bill Mason, is troubled about the posting to nearby Fort Supply and causes trouble and is thrown in jail by Crown. Collected the next day by Maj. Ben Covington who realizes Mason is his son he had not seen since he was a child when his mother had left him and taught her son to hate him. Escaping from the fort jail, Mason seeks out George Deeker, an ex captain who has a created a gang of army deserters. With his knowledge of explosives taught to him by the army Mason impresses Deeker and the gang steal a safe from the Wells Fargo office in Hardesty, rob a freight office in Shade's Wells and blow a whole in a mail train roof using Mason's knowledge of explosives. Maj. Covington asks for Crown to help search for his son in the outlet but things go wrong and Crown and Covington's fate is left in the hands of Mason. Guest stars: Andrew Duggan and Jon Voight 23 0723 "The Greeners" Vincent McEveety Hal Sitowitz March 7, 1968 Morton Stevens The God fearing Jared Arlyn, his two sons and daughter, 'Greeners' traveling from Salem to the Cherokee outlet to farm, see two harmless drifters dragged by ropes behind four horsemen. Later, when they find the two men hanged, they take the bodies into Cimarron. Although Jared Arlyn admits seeing the two hanged men being dragged he refuses, because he did not witness the actual hanging, to testify against the four using his religious convictions as a shield. Things go wrong for the Arlyn's when they discover the Cherokee outlet is closed until the government makes a decision. Crown, MacGregor and tracker Charles Ives set out to find the four horsemen Crown suspects are the murderers. He arrests rancher Turner and his three cowhands as they are about to drag Ives, whom they accuse of cattle rustling, behind a horse. In jail, Turner is blackmailed for $600 by David Arlyn who plans to buy a farm for his family, neighboring Turner's cattle ranch, until his father learns how he acquired the money. Guest stars: Mark Lenard, Dub Taylor and Gregg Palmer
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