The Virginian

Season 3 Episode 27

Farewell to Honesty

Aired Wednesday 7:30 PM Mar 24, 1965 on NBC

Episode Recap

The Virginian arrives in Honesty, Wyoming looking for Major Ralph Forrester (Richard Carlson) and finding he lives in town, asks the way to the Sherriff's office. Also, he thinks he recognizes Jennifer McLeod (Kathleen Crowley) who runs the saloon but she denies knowing him. The Virginian goes to the Major's house accompanied by Sheriff Killigrew (Harry Swoger) where he meets not only the Major, but the Major's wife Laura (Dorothy Green) and his business manager, Leonard Walters (Douglas Henderson). He is seeking the Major on a fraud charge as he had paid for $8,000 worth of Judge Garth's cattle with forged deeds and he wants the Major to return with him to Medicine Bow. Forrester refuses and brings in the local Judge Dodge (Herbert Voland) who it is clear is in his pocket, and who rules that even though the Virginian was deputized to carry out this task, he is not a full-time law man and therefore cannot take the Major away. After the Virginian leaves it is revealed that the business assets are actually controlled by his wife who inherited them from her late father and Laura accusses the Major of seeing another woman.

The local lawyer, John Harrison (Harold Gould), advises the Virginian to wire for a full-time law man from Medicine Bow rather than go to trial in Honesty, as the Major and his wife control the town. At the saloon which he owns, the Major meets Jennifer, reveals an interest in her, and notes that Jennifer was in trouble in Cheyenne and he lied to get her out of it. The Virginian goes to the saloon and Jennifer still denies knowing him. He also meets the Major who tells him to get out of town and when he refuses they almost come to a gun battle but Jennifer intervenes. The Major leaves and the Virginian later walks Jennifer home and recognizes her as Jenny, younger sister of Carol Bain, with whose husband he had worked in the Cheyenne stockyards eight years before. She advises him to leave town and after he leaves her place someone takes some shots at him and he tells the Sheriff if it happens again he will go after the Major.

Leonard and Laura discuss the Forrester business and it is noted that with the $8,000 owed the Virginian, and $12,000 stolen in an earlier payroll robbery, that the business is in trouble. Meanwhile, Deputy Sheriff Ryker has wired from Medicine Bow he is coming but the message is intercepted by the Major. In return for the false deeds, the Major gives the Virginian $8,000 in cash. After the Virginian leaves, the Major tells Jennifer they are leaving town together – she refuses to leave but he threatens to expose her for her problems in Cheyenne. This conversation is overheard by Leonard Walters. The Virginian is waylaid and the money is stolen. He heads straight for the Major's house and accuses him but the Major claims he has an alibi. The major then makes to leave saying he has to go away on business but she knows he is going to leave with Jennifer.

In town as the Virginian goes to meet Jennifer he is shot at and returns fire into an alley where he finds the dead Major. He claims he was shot at but the major is unarmed and the Virginian is arrested and charged with murder. Ryker arrives the next day and he and John Harrison conclude someone stole the gun and probably the $20,000 that the Major had on him. Ryker also finds that the Major had left his gun at home and the only other gun he owned, a derringer, is still in a desk at the Forrester house. He also finds two bullet holes in a building at the scene of the crime which from their location he deduces were shot by the Virginian.

At the murder trial, Harrison is able to show that the bullets from the wall fired by the Virginian are different that those which killed the Major. Suspecting Jennifer who was first at the scene of the murder, her room is searched by the Sheriff and the $20,000 and a gun are found. Jennifer admits she took the money from the Major's body but denies shooting him and states she took the money to protect Laura, not for her own use. Surprisingly, it is found her gun did not shoot the fatal bullets either. Ryker deduces and is able to show that the bullets came from the Major's derringer which leads Harrison to accuse Laura Forrester who he claims did it out of jealousy. Leonard Walters however interrupts the trial proceedings by stating that he loves Laura and he killed the Major for the way he treated his wife. The Virginian gets the $8,000 from Laura Forrester and Jenny says she might come by Medicine Bow some day. The Virginian and Ryker ride out of town.

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