The Virginian (1962–1971)
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The Decision 

Sheriff Dan Porter leaves his job in Mason City to follow his wife Emily to Medicine Bow as she can't handle the pressure of his job. He signs on at Shiloh to learn ranching so he can start a ranch and new life with his wife.


Richard Carr, Owen Wister (novel)




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
John McIntire ... Clay Grainger (credit only)
Doug McClure ... Trampas
Clu Gulager ... Emmett Ryker (credit only)
Don Quine ... Stacey Grainger
Sara Lane ... Elizabeth Grainger (credit only)
James Drury ... The Virginian
Kenneth Tobey ... Sheriff Dan Porter
Monica Lewis ... Emily 'Em' Porter
Steve Carlson ... Deputy Sheriff Frank North
Ben Murphy ... Wes Manning
Lawrence Dane ... Tasker
Than Wyenn Than Wyenn ... Morgan
Chuck Courtney ... Carmody
Lew Brown Lew Brown ... Dink
Harper Flaherty Harper Flaherty ... Harper


Sheriff Dan Porter leaves his job as sheriff of Mason City to follow his wife to Medicine Bow as she is terrified of him being killed on the job. He signs on as a ranch hand at Shiloh to learn ranching but Trampas has a grudge against him for putting Trampas in jail for a week and hitting him with a gun during a fight. Porter hopes to buy and start his own ranch once he has learned the basics. Only The Virginian knows Porter's reason for taking the job. Although The Virginian tells Trampas to leave Porter alone, Trampas continues to fume resulting in Trampas starting a fight with Porter when he sees him grab a woman - his wife - on the street in Medicine Bow. The Virginian eventually breaks up the rough fight and tells Trampas the truth and who the woman is. Trampas realizing Porter is not such a bad guy makes up with him and they become good friends. When a Shiloh cattle drive has to divert to Mason City, Porter finds the young man he left in charge is not up to the challenge of the ... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

1930s to 2020s | See All (1) »










Release Date:

13 March 1968 (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?


The last Virginian episode to feature Don Quine. See more »

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User Reviews

Luck would have it
3 September 2017 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Guest starring in this Virginian episode are Kenneth Tobey and Monica Lewis as a husband and wife new arrivals in Medicine Bow. Tobey is a former sheriff of another town who has quit the job and now just wants to be a rancher. For some wages and learning experience Tobey signs on at Shiloh ranch as a hand.

But as luck would have it The Virginian and Trampas are taking a drive to the market in the place Tobey was the sheriff. Some other trail herds are in town and one of them is headed by Lawrence Dane who's a mean one and expects that from the rest of his crew. And Tobey's replacement is definitely not up to the job.

Tobey really stands out as a man who just can't escape the profession he chose or maybe we could look at it as the profession that chose him.

A story to satisfy western fans.

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