Season 7

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The Debt

Episode 1

Date Aired: September 12, 1965
Plot: Wiley and Annie Kane arrive at the Ponderosa to work off their father's debt to Ben. It seems as though the elder Kane once swindled the Cartwright patriarch.
Written by: William Blinn
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Wiley Kane - Tommy Sands, Annie Kane - Brooke Bundy

The Dilemma

Episode 2

Date Aired: September 19, 1965
Plot: Ben helps a convict win a parole only to have the man later become the chief suspect in a bank robbery.
Written by: John Hawkins
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Sundown Davis - Tom Tully, Billy - Anthony Call, Ruth - Elizabeth Perry

The Brass Box

Episode 3

Date Aired: September 26, 1965
Plot: Juan Ortega claims he has a land grant which gives him ownership of the entire Nevada Territory.
Written by: Paul Schneider
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: José Ortega - Ramon Navarro

The Other Son

Episode 4

Date Aired: October 3, 1965
Plot: A mule skinner and his two sons are hired by Ben to transport nitroglycerin to California.
Written by: Thomas Thompson
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Clint Watson - Ed Begley, Sr., Andy Watson - Tom Simcox, Ellis Watson - Richard Evans

The Lonely Runner

Episode 5

Date Aired: October 10, 1965
Plot: The Cartwrights' friend, Jim Acton, is in danger of losing his prized mare. He has sold a herd of wild horses to horse trader Sam Whipple, and Whipple takes him to court claiming the mare was part of that herd. Acton walks out on the court proceedings, and the judge awards the mare to Whipple. When Acton tries to make a deal with Whipple to buy her back, Whipple shoots at him. Jim kills Whipple in self defense and becomes a wanted man. The Cartwrights are sure he is innocent, but an overzealous deputy under Sheriff Coffee, has other intentions. Acton has only one wish: to run free like a wild horse.
Written by: Thomas Thompson
Directed by: William Witney
Guest Stars: Jim Acton - Gilbert Roland

Devil on Her Shoulder

Episode 6

Date Aired: October 17, 1965
Plot: Ben is attracted to Sarah Reynolds, a member of a religious order led by her fanatical uncle. When she is accused of being a witch, the Cartwrights step in.
Written by: Suzanne Clauser
Directed by: Virgil Vogel
Guest Stars: Sarah Reynolds - Ina Balin

Found Child

Episode 7

Date Aired: October 24, 1965
Plot: Hoss comes upon an overturned stagecoach and discovers a little girl suffering from shock. After the Cartwrights suceed in bringing her around, Hoss is disappointed she has relatives and cannot stay. The girl's uncle turns out to be the enemy and Hoss saves her.
Written by: Frank Cleaver
Directed by: Ralph E. Black
Guest Stars: Collins - Gerald Mohr, Lisa - Eileen Baral

The Meredith Smith

Episode 8

Date Aired: October 31, 1965
Plot: Ben must determine who is the rightful heir to a fortune that includes water rights vital to the Ponderosa.
Written by: Lois Hire
Directed by: John Florea
Guest Stars: Callie - Anne Helm, Ace - Robert Colbert, Little Meredith - Strother Martin

Mighty is the Word

Episode 9

Date Aired: November 7, 1965
Plot: Virginia City's newest preacher is an ex-gunfighter who wants only to build a new church, but the brother of one of his victims has other ideas. The blueprints for the church are said to be a gift from Adam.
Written by: Thomas Thompson
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Reverend Paul Watson - Glenn Corbett, Sue Watson - Sue Randall

The Strange One

Episode 10

Date Aired: November 14, 1965
Plot: Hoss and Joe find a woman abandoned by a wagon train because her gift of prophecy is considered a curse. "Wouldn't it be wonderful," says Ben, "if eveybody made a real effort to understand whatever's strange and unfamiliar rather to fear it and try to destroy it?"
Written by: Jo Pagano
Directed by: Gerd Oswald
Guest Stars: Marie - Louise Sorel

The Reluctant Rebel

Episode 11

Date Aired: November 21, 1965
Plot: The Generation Gap, Western-style, as Hoss tries to bring a young man and his father closer together.
Written by: Wally Geor
Directed by: R.G. Springsteen
Guest Stars: Billy Penn - Tim Considine, Hank Penn - Royal Dano

Five Sundowns to Sunup

Episode 12

Date Aired: December 5, 1965
Plot: The mother of a young outlaw condemned to hang, threatens to have her gang's hostages killed if her son is not set free. One of the hostages is Joe.
Written by: William L. Stuart
Directed by: Gerd Oswald
Guest Stars: Ma Lassiter - Marie Windsor

A Natural Wizard

Episode 13

Date Aired: December 12, 1965
Plot: Hoss finds a kindred spirit in Skeeter Dexter, a lonesome young man who feels closer to animals than most people.
Written by: William Blinn
Directed by: Robert Totten
Guest Stars: Skeeter Dexter - Eddie Hodges, Joy Dexter - Jacqueline Scott

All Ye His Saints

Episode 14

Date Aired: December 19, 1965
Plot: In this series' highlight, little Michael Thorpe heads to the high country to ask God to spare his critically wounded father, believing he has found Him in the form of longtime fugitive Tom Cain.
Written by: William Blinn
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Tom Cain - Leif Erickson, Michael Thorpe - Clint Howard

The Dublin Lad

Episode 15

Date Aired: January 2, 1966
Plot: After sitting on a jury that has convicted Terrence O' Tool of murder, Joe has second thoughts about the verdict and decides to do some investigating of his own.
Written by: Mort Thaw
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Terrence O' Toole - Liam Sullivan, Molly Dimmer - Maggie Mahoney

To Kill a Buffalo

Episode 16

Date Aired: January 9, 1966
Plot: Hoss finds a wounded young Indian on the prairie, who is torn between accepting the ways of the white man or returning to his old life.
Written by: Michael Fisher
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Tatu - Jose De Vega

Ride the Wind (1)

Episode 17

Date Aired: January 16, 1966
Plot: The Pony Express sets up office in Virginia and Joe is one of the first to join up. Ben also decides to invest in the fledgling enterprise. However, troubles soon plague the Pony Express with the Paiutes and a newspaper reporter, both trying to get their own agendas across.
Written by: Paul Schneider
Directed by: William Witney
Guest Stars: Charles Ludlow - Victor Jory, Curtis Wade - Rod Cameron, Tully - DeForest Kelley, Jabez Ludow - Tom Lowell, Hoke - Warren Vanders

Ride the Wind (2)

Episode 18

Date Aired: January 23, 1966
Plot: Conclusion to the previous-week's episode, where the Cartwrights provide needed assistance to the Pony Express.
Written by: Paul Schneider
Directed by: William Witney
Guest Stars: Charles Ludlow - Victor Jory, Curtis Wade - Rod Cameron, Tully - DeForest Kelley, Jabez Ludow - Tom Lowell, Hoke - Warren Vanders

Destiny's Child

Episode 19

Date Aired: January 30, 1966
Plot: After his only friend is killed, the Cartwrights take in a slow-witted man, who Roy Coffee informs them, is wanted for murder by Arizona authorities.
Written by: Robert V. Barron
Directed by: Gerd Oswald
Guest Stars: Sonny - Richard Peabody

Peace Officer

Episode 20

Date Aired: February 6, 1966
Plot: While Sheriff Coffee is in Saint Louis, the Morrisey bunch decides to work off excess energy by wrecking the saloon in a violent spree. When Deputy Bill Harris tries to arrest them, they hit him on the head with a whiskey bottle, accidentally killing him. All of them get away except Cliff, who is put in jail. He refuses to say the names or locations of his friends. Mayor Garrett holds an emergency meeting of the Virginia City town council. They hire legendary lawman Wes Dunn, as the temporary sheriff. He is a humorless man who is determined to restore order in town. He beats Cliff almost to death to find out where his friends are, but Cliff will not say anything. Meanwhile, Hoss finds Chuck, a wounded gang member. When he tries to take Chuck's gun away, he shoots Hoss. Joe goes with Dunn to find the other men. He thinks Dunn is a hero until he sees him murder one of the suspects in cold blood.
Written by: Don Mullavy
Directed by: William Witney
Guest Stars: Wes Dunn - Eric Fleming

The Code

Episode 21

Date Aired: February 13, 1966
Plot: Joe is goaded into facing gunman Dan Taggert, unaware there is more to be prearranged than he realizes.
Written by: Sidney Ellis
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Dan Taggert - George Montgomery, Sally - Jan Shepard

Three Brides for Hoss

Episode 22

Date Aired: February 20, 1966
Plot: Not one, but three mail-order brides show up unexpectedly at the Ponderosa, all of them believing they are to marry Hoss.
Written by: Jo Pagano
Directed by: Ralph E. Black
Guest Stars: Jester - Stuart Erwin, Annie Slocum - Majel Barrett, Jed - Wynn Pearce, Libby Spencerfield - Mitzi Hoag, Yvette - Danielle Aubry, Ned - Claude Hall, Jenny - Sharyl Locke

The Emperor Norton

Episode 23

Date Aired: February 27, 1966
Plot: Joshua Norton, an eccentric and formerly wealthy San Francisco merchant who considers himself Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico, comes to the Ponderosa. Authorities want to have him committed, and Ben contacts Mark Twain to testify to Norton's sanity.
Written by: Robert Sabaroff
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Emperor Joshua Norton - Sam Jaffe

Her Brother's Keeper

Episode 24

Date Aired: March 6, 1966
Plot: Ben and Claire Armory fall in love, but their future is jeopardized by her disabled brother.
Written by: Mort Thaw
Directed by: R.G. Springsteen
Guest Stars: Claire Armory - Nancy Gates, Carl Armory - Wesley Lau

The Trouble with Jamie

Episode 25

Date Aired: March 20, 1966
Plot: The Cartwrights attempt to straighten out the snobbish young son of Ben's cousin.
Written by: Helen B. Hicks
Directed by: R.G. Springsteen
Guest Stars: Jamie - Michael Burns

Shining in Spain

Episode 26

Date Aired: March 27, 1966
Plot: Young, adoring Wendy Daniels has come to Virginia City to meet up with her father, Taylor Daniels, who has been traveling on business for the last five years. Joe is attracted to Wendy, but he faces stiff competition for her affections. She idolizes her father and cannot stop talking about his great business visions, although she has not seen him in five years. The Cartwrights realize there is something wrong when Wendy's supposedly rich father leaves her stranded in Virginia City with no money. When she is evicted from the hotel after running up a debt of $50, Joe takes her to the Ponderosa, only to have her dreams of her father shattered when he shows up flat broke.
Written by: Elliot Gilbert
Directed by: Maury Geraghty
Guest Stars: Wendy Daniels - Judi Rolin, Jim Huber - Woodrow Parfrey, Taylor Daniels - Gene Lyons

The Genius

Episode 27

Date Aired: April 3, 1966
Plot: Hoss chooses a difficult path when he decides to rehabilitate a famous poet, Will Smith, who is really William Warlock Evans, who spends too much time drinking and eventually his wife arrives at the Ponderosa.
Written by: Don Mullavy
Directed by: R.G. Springsteen
Guest Stars: Will Smith / William Warcock Evans - Lonny Chapman, Lydia Evans - Jorja Curtwright

The Unwritten Commandment

Episode 28

Date Aired: April 10, 1966
Plot: Everyone feels Andy Walker is an outstanding singer but his father, who feels the boy should concentrate on ranch work instead. Joe mentions receiving a letter from Adam, currently in Paris.
Written by: Jo Pagano
Directed by: Gerd Oswald
Guest Stars: Andy Walker - Wayne Newton, Miss Lily - Ann Jefferys, Willard Walker - Malcolm Atterbury

Big Shadows on the Land

Episode 29

Date Aired: April 17, 1966
Plot: Italian immigrants are determined to establish their own vineyard on Ponderosa property.
Written by: William F. Leicester
Directed by: William F. Claxton
Guest Stars: Georgio Rossi - Jack Kruschen, Regina Rossi - Brioni Farrell, Lorenzo Rossi - Michael Stefani, Maria Rossi - Penny Santon

The Fighters

Episode 30

Date Aired: April 24, 1966
Plot: Feeling guilty for unintentionally ending the career of a professional boxer, Hoss vows never to fight again. But things change when Joe is nearly beaten to death.
Written by: Robert L. Goodwin
Directed by: R.G. Springsteen
Guest Stars: Hank - Michael Conrad

Home from the Sea

Episode 31

Date Aired: May 1, 1966
Plot: A sailor, claiming to be one of Adam's closest friends, is given a warm welcome by the Cartwrights, who have no way of knowing the man and his accomplice plan on robbing them.
Written by: George F. Slavin
Directed by: Jean Yarbrough
Guest Stars: Gilly Maples - Alan Bergmann

The Last Mission

Episode 32

Date Aired: May 8, 1966
Plot: Ben and Hoss unwittingly aid a vengeful army colonel who plans to wipe out every Indian he can with a Gatling gun.
Written by: William Douglas Lansford
Directed by: R.G. Springsteen
Guest Stars: Colonel Keith Jarrell - R. G. Armstrong, Sergeant Devlin - Tom Reese

A Dollar's Worth of Trouble

Episode 33

Date Aired: May 15, 1966
Plot: Hoss finds himself in another mess, this one involving a beautiful blonde, a moonshiner, and a nearsighted outlaw who is allergic to chocolate and flowers.
Written by: Robert L. Goodwin
Directed by: Don Daves
Guest Stars: Kathleen Walker - Sally Kellerman, Craig Bonner - Hamton Fancher, Walker - Elisha Cook Jr.