Bonanza (1959–1973)
3 user

The Legacy 

When Ben goes missing and presumed dead after being shot by poachers he was hunting alone, his sons search for the seemingly likely suspects: three innocent ex-convicts who fear being so suspected.


Bernard McEveety (as Bernard E. McEveety)


Anthony Wilson


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Lorne Greene ... Ben Cartwright
Pernell Roberts ... Adam Cartwright
Dan Blocker ... Eric 'Hoss' Cartwright
Michael Landon ... Joseph 'Little Joe' Cartwright
Robert H. Harris ... Jacob J. Dormann
Phillip Pine ... Gannon
James Best ... Page
Sandy McPeak ... Billy Chapin (as Sandy Kevin)
Jeanne Baird ... Jeanie
Ray Teal ... Sheriff Roy Coffee
Dayton Lummis Dayton Lummis ... Col. Abel Chapin
Percy Helton ... Pete
James Doohan ... Colonel's Man
Rory Stevens Rory Stevens ... Danny Page
Will J. White ... Big Cowboy


Three men newly released from Huntsville prison make their way across the Ponderosa. When Ben and Little Joe see someone is poaching their cattle, Ben goes after them. When he comes upon those responsible, he is ambushed and left for dead. When only his horse returns to the ranch, the sons set off to find Ben's missing rifle at best or at the worst his killers. Written by DrDOS

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Release Date:

15 December 1963 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

How Well Did Ben Raise The Boys
11 August 2010 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

No single Cartwright dominates this particular episode, all four of them have their moments in The Legacy.

While riding the Ponderosa Ben comes across a poacher and he is shot by him. The man was one of three who were recently let out of prison and are making their way home.

Lorne Greene is left to die on the trail, but a passing drummer finds him and doctors him in the person of Robert Harris. The boys don't know Greene's alive, all they know is their father's horse comes home to the Ponderosa with blood on the saddle. All three of them take after the perpetrators and they split up each going after one of the released convicts.

All three of the sons has a story to tell in catching up with their man. Greene finds out and worries as to what they will do. If he's raised them right they'll leave it to the law. But as we know the Cartwrights are one close knit family.

It's nice and tight well constructed Bonanza episode, but there's one really bad flaw. The shooter steals Lorne Greene's rifle with a carved C on the stock. How he kept it hidden from the other two I still can't figure it out.

James Best, Sandy Kevin, and Philip Pine are the three convicts. Also in the cast in a minor role as a cowboy is James Doohan. Robert Mitchum's brother John Mitchum plays a saloon bartender. In his memoirs John Mitchum relates how well he got along with Dan Blocker who he saw as a good old boy from Texas. He was shocked when he found out Blocker was a liberal, he didn't fit the mold of a liberal in Mitchum's eyes.

Other than that one flaw The Legacy is a good episode showing Cartwright family values at their best.

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