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Doc Holliday is in Laramie and Dan would like to see him go because a family is out for revenge after Doc shoots one of their own. However, he is hanging around for a woman due on the stagecoach and won't go until she gets there.
Larry DeLong is a reformed criminal who is now employed as a shotgun rider on the stage line. When his former gang robs the stage on which he's riding, and the driver is killed, the townspeople of Laramie feel Larry is about ready to rejoin the gang.
A posse is formed to find a suspected murderer, and a gunslinger is included in the posse. The other citizens are eager to hang the suspect when they find him, but the gunslinger, Fent Hartley, is the only one willing to give the accused the benefit of the doubt. The suspect's wife, meanwhile, makes a confession to Johnny that he must tell Dan before it's too late.moreless
Big Hat Anderson and Lily Keats are married, and Frank Tate, the newspaper editor, is given the groom's "big hat" to wear. As he leaves the saloon, he is shot and killed. Dan must find the killer, and starts with former loves of the bride. Frank's niece, Julie, comes to Laramie to take over his job at the paper.moreless
A wounded Ben Greene is accused of stealing cattle. He insists that he bought them legally, and his brand release is at his cabin. The men who accuse him are unsavory characters that both Johnny and Dan seem to distrust.
While going to arrest two men for murder, Dan is mauled by a bear. A woman saves him and takes him to her cabin, but he doesn't know she's the sister of one of the wanted men. She nurses him, even though she knows he's a lawman because of his badge, which she saw and threw away. Then her brother and his partner come back, and emotions run high.moreless
Upset that Dan refuses to rescind a 10 p.m. curfew he's put on all the saloons in town, the three saloon owners draw straws to see who gets the short straw. That man is the one who is supposed to kill Marshal Troop. Instead, he hires a killer whom Dan knows and recognizes in the cafe.moreless
Fallon, a ruthless bounty hunter, brings in a body of a wanted man and collects the reward from Dan, who knew him elsewhere and doesn't like him. After being told to leave town, Fallon shows Dan and Johnny a picture of the next man on his "hit list." Johnny knows him and tries to protect him from the killer, but is injured in the process. Finally, Dan must step in to stop another killing by Fallon.moreless
Cowhand Dick Sellers delights in taunting old men and teenagers into gunfights that they can't win. When Dan has enough and arrests the man, the town council refuse to do anything except fine Sellers for fear that his friends will go on a rampage.
In this pilot episode, Dan Troop takes over in Laramie after the previous marshal is killed. His first job is to bring in the marshal's killer, and in the process he gains a fine deputy in Johnny McKay.