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Westerns
The Rifleman

Title Card - THE RIFLEMAN

ABC Network
1958-1963
Drama
30 Minutes

The western series THE RIFLEMAN/ABC/1958-63 starred Chuck Connors as Lucas McCain, a widower homesteader who raised his motherless son, Mark (Johnny Crawford) near the 1888 town of Northfolk, New Mexico.

Before arriving to the Southwest, Lucas was known as the "Rifleman" in the Nations territory. Reportedly, McCain could squeeze off a round of ammunition every three-tenth of a second and fire eight times in two-and-a-half seconds.

Lucas used his skills with his rifle (a specially modified Winchester) to protect his home and the local townsfolk, often coming to the assistance of the aging Marshal Micah Torrance (Paul Fix).

Johnny Crawford as Mark McCain and Chuck Connors as Lucas McCain - THE RIFLEMAN
Mark and Lucas McCain

When McCain was not tending to the chores at his ranch or helping the town marshal, he spent time with various people in town. They included:

  • John Harmon as Eddie Holstead, the owner of the Madera House Hotel.
  • Gloria DeHaven as Lillian Holstead, Harmon's daughter
  • Hope Summers as Hattie Denton, the general store owner
  • Joan Taylor as Millie Scott, the proprietor of the general store and McCain's love interest. She bought the store from Hattie.
  • Cheryl Holdridge as Sally Walker, Millie's niece
  • Patricia Blair as Lou Mallory, a kind-hearted con-artist  who owns the Mallory House Hotel. She also owned the general store, a farm and several parcels of land around town.
  • Harlin Warde as John Hamilton, the Norfolk Bank President
  • Bill Quinn as Sweeney, the Last Chance Saloon bartender

To travel into town and about, McCain used a horse and wagon. Otherwise, Lucas rode a horse named Razor; his son, Mark rode Blue Boy.

Johnny Gibbs (Jerome Courtland), McCain's brother-in-law and Artemis Quarles (Thomas Gomez), Lucas's cousin by marriage occasionally visited Lucas and Mark at their ranch.


Memorabilia

Listen to Theme Song

 

Lucas McCain's Winchester
Lucas McCain's Winchester Rifle


TRIVIA NOTE: Born in Brooklyn, NY on April 10, 1921, Chuck Connors died of lung cancer and pneumonia on November 10, 1992. Later in his career, Connors starred in the western drama BRANDED/ABC/1965-66.

On the sci-fi sitcom OUT OF THIS WORLD/SYN/1987-91 Doug McClure played Cowboy Kyle, a western movie/TV character who wore fancy shirts with ruffles. Off-the-set, Kyle was nicknamed The Ruffleman.

Obituaries: Bill Quinn - April 29, 1994;  Paul Fix -  October 14, 1983; John Harmon - August 6, 1985; Hope Summers - June 22, 1979.


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