Iron Horse (TV Series 1966–1968)


Iron Horse (TV Series 1966–1968)

Ben Calhoun won the half-completed Buffalo Pass, Scalplock and Defiance Line railroad in a poker game and must fight 1880s Indians, bankers and bad guys to complete the line.
IMDb   7.3 /10
TheMovieDb    8.0 /10
Creator James Goldstone
Creator Stephen Kandel
Release Date1966-09-12
Runtime1h 0mins
Content Rating
CompanyDagonet Productions, Screen Gems Television
Ben Calhoun 48 episodes, 1966-1968
Barnabas Rogers / ... 48 episodes, 1966-1968
Dave Tarrant 45 episodes, 1966-1968

Iron Horse (TV series)

Iron Horse is an American Western television series that appeared on ABC from 1966 to 1968 and featured Dale Robertson as fictional gambler-turned-railroad baron Ben Calhoun. Costars included Gary Collins, Robert Random and Ellen Burstyn (who was billed as Ellen McRae). The series pilot was released as the film Scalplock.


The plot centered on Calhoun's poker game-win of the incomplete Buffalo Pass, Scalplock, & Defiance Railroad and his attempts to finish the line despite ever-present obstacles.

A running subplot was Calhoun's frequent and (for TV at that time) flagrant sexual dalliances with his many attractive female guest stars, as well as his steadier on and off arrangement with Julie Parsons, played by Ellen Burstyn. Though he was never shown in bed with any of them, there was little doubt about what was happening between scenes; and marriage was never proposed as a possibility. The second season minimized Calhoun's sexual exploits somewhat, perhaps in response to viewer complaints.

Much of the external footage involving trains was shot on the historic Sierra Railroad in and around Jamestown and Sonora, California. The filming was produced by Screen Gems.

Episode list

Pilot: 1966

  • Scalplock / April 10, 1966 (1966-04-10)

Season 1: 1966–67

EpTitleDirected by:Written by:Original air date
11"Joy Unconfined"James GoldstoneStephen KandelSeptember 12, 1966
22"The Dynamite Driver"Claudio GuzmánStephen KandelSeptember 19, 1966
33"High Devil"Samuel FullerSamuel FullerSeptember 26, 1966
44"Right of Way Through Paradise"Richard BenedictMort LewisOctober 3, 1966
55"Pride at the Bottom of the Barrel"Jesse HibbsJohn O'Dea & Arthur RoweOctober 10, 1966
66"Broken Gun"Jesse HibbsJohn O'Dea & Arthur RoweOctober 17, 1966
77"Cougar Man"Robert TottenRobert SabaroffOctober 24, 1966
88"War Cloud"Joseph KaneT : Richard & Esther Shapiro;
S/T : Richard C. Meyer & Norman T. Herman
October 31, 1966
99"No Wedding Bells for Tony"Harmon JonesPeter GermanoNovember 7, 1966
1010"The Man from New Chicago"Samuel FullerMort LewisNovember 14, 1966
1111"Explosion at Waycrossing"Murray GoldenRobert DennisNovember 21, 1966
1212"Through Ticket to Gunsight"Herb WallersteinPreston WoodNovember 28, 1966
1313"Town Full of Fear"László BenedekT : John O'Dea & Arthur Rowe;
S/T : Robert Hamner
December 5, 1966
1414"Big Deal"Earl BellamyBernard Rothman & Norman KlenmanDecember 12, 1966
1515"A Dozen Ways to Kill a Man"Herb WallersteinT : Peter Germano;
S/T : Louis Vittes
December 19, 1966
1616"Hellcat"Samuel FullerStory by : Oliver Crawford
Teleplay by : Samuel Fuller & Oliver Crawford
December 26, 1966
1717"Welcome for the General"Alan Crosland Jr.Sherman YellenJanuary 2, 1967
1818"The Pembrooke Blood"Herb WallersteinRichard & Esther ShapiroJanuary 9, 1967
1919"Volcano Wagon"Samuel FullerKen TreveyJanuary 16, 1967
2020"The Bridge at Forty-Mile"Herb WallersteinThomas W. BlackburnJanuary 23, 1967
2121"Shadow Run"Paul HenreidPeter GermanoJanuary 30, 1967
2222"Banner with a Strange Device"Samuel FullerJohn O'Dea & Arthur RoweFebruary 6, 1967
2323"Appointment with an Epitaph"Herbert HirschmanHarold LivingstonFebruary 13, 1967
2424"The Red Tornado"Samuel FullerWarren DouglasFebruary 20, 1967
2525"Decision at Sundown"Herb WallersteinStephen KandelFebruary 27, 1967
2626"The Passenger"William J. Hole Jr.Irving Cummings & Charles MarionMarch 6, 1967
2727"The Execution"Herbert HirschmanKen KolbMarch 13, 1967
2828"Death by Triangulation"Otto LangLouis VittesMarch 20, 1967
2929"The Golden Web"Herb WallersteinStephen KandelMarch 27, 1967
3030"Sister Death"Herbert HirschmanMann RubinApril 3, 1967

Season 2: 1967–68

EpTitleDirected by:Written by:Original air date
311"Diablo"Herb WallersteinJeri Emmett & Terence MaplesSeptember 16, 1967
322"Consignment, Betsy the Boiler"Richard C. SarafianBob Duncan & Wanda DuncanSeptember 23, 1967
333"Gallows for Bill Pardew"Gene NelsonBob Duncan & Wanda DuncanSeptember 30, 1967
344"Five Days to Washtiba"Lazlo BenedekMilton S. GelmanOctober 7, 1967
355"The Silver Bullet"Anton LeaderOliver CrawfordOctober 14, 1967
366"Grapes of Grass Valley"Paul HenreidStanley Adams & George F. SlavinOctober 21, 1967
377"Leopards Try, But Leopards Can't"Leo PennJeri Emmett & Norman KatkovOctober 28, 1967
388"The Return of Hode Avery"Gene NelsonHarry KronmanNovember 4, 1967
399"Four Guns to Scalplock"Murray GoldenRobert Leslie BellemNovember 11, 1967
4010"Steel Chain to a Music Box"Charles R. RondeauHerman GrovesNovember 18, 1967
4111"Six Hours to Sky High"Paul HenreidJack HawnNovember 25, 1967
4212"T is for Traitor"Tony LeaderMilton S. GelmanDecember 2, 1967
4313"Dealer's Choice"Herb WallersteinStanley Adams & George F. SlavinDecember 9, 1967
4414"Wild Track"Gene NelsonGilbert RalstonDecember 16, 1967
4515"Death Has Two Faces"Paul HenreidGilbert RalstonDecember 23, 1967
4616"The Prisoner"Leo PennJohn KneubuhlDecember 30, 1967
4717"Dry Run to Glory"Herb WallersteinDonald S. TaitJanuary 6, 1968

Guest stars

  • Walter Maslow, as Dimas Mott in "Right of Way Through Paradise" (1966)
  • Hoyt Axton, as Slash Birney in "Right of Way Through Paradise" (1966)
  • Karen Black, as Patricia Dunne in "The Prisoners" (1967)
  • Ahna Capri, Angie in "Steel Chain to a Music Box" (1967)
  • Pat Conway, formerly Sheriff Clay Hollister on the ABC and then syndicated western, Tombstone Territory.
  • Dennis Cross as Jim Vail in "Town Full of Fear"
  • Sharon Farrell as Carrie in "The Pembrooke Blood" (1967)
  • Celia Kaye as Emily in "Decision at Sundown"
  • Don Keefer as Blake and Barbara Stuart as Lil Kane in "Sister Death" (1967)
  • Douglas Kennedy, as Adam Preston in "The Bridge at Forty-Mile" (1967), with X Brands as Juanito in the same episode
  • John M. Pickard, as Sergeant Terry in "War Cloud" and as Bulwer in "Through Ticket to Gunsight" (both 1966)
  • Judson Pratt as Brady in "Wild Track" (1967)
  • Mike Ragan as Cantley in "The Prisoners' (1967)
  • Arthur Space as Andy in "Gallows for Bill Pardew" (1967)
  • Lurene Tuttle as Mrs. Emerson in "Sister Death" (1967)
  • Michael Witney as Jared Hobson in "The Execution" (1967)
  • Tony Young appeared three times, as Shad in "No Wedding Bells for Tony" (1966), Red Shirt (uncredited) in "Hellcat" (also 1966), and as Tower in "Banner with a Strange Device (1967).

Home media

On October 2, 2012 Sony Pictures Home Entertainment was due to release the first season of the series on DVD through an online manufacture-on-demand program via and Warner Bros, Archives, but this release has been delayed.