Rio Grande (1950)
John Wayne, silver dollars and coins, some modern
The 1950 Republic Pictures film "Rio Grande" shows some United States silver coins and a
Confederate ten dollar currency note.
Texas near the Rio Grande river and the Mexican border in 1879.
enlisted in the Army after failing mathematics at the US Military Academy (West Point).
during Union General Sheridan's Shenandoah Valley Campaign.
on a table.
1. Republic Pictures Logo
Merian Cooper previously produced the 1933 film "King Kong".
3. Colonel Yorke
Colonel Yorke is the commander of a US Army Cavalry regiment stationed in Apache Indian territory
in Texas along the Rio Grande river border with Mexico.
He visits the post and informs Col. Yorke that his 16-year old son Jefferson Yorke, a cadet at the
US Military Academy at West Point, has failed mathematics and has been dismissed.
4. New recruits arrive
Jefferson Yorke (on the right) is one of the recruits.
5. Sergeant Major Quincannon
Sergeant Quincannon is a veteran non-commissioned officer who is in charge of instructing
the new recruits in army horsemanship.
6. Colonel Yorke and the Colonel's Lady
Mrs. Yorke has come to get their son out of the Army.
At the time a soldier could purchase a discharge for $100 but only if his commanding officer agreed.
with the scheme.
7. Mother and son
The son tells her that even if his father signed the discharge request that he would not.
8. Musicians and singers
The "Sons of the Pioneers" were one of the top Western singing groups of the period, and recorded
such songs as "Cool Water", "Tumbling Tumbleweeds", and "Ghost Riders in the Sky".
9. Kirby and Kathleen discuss their son
Mrs. Yorke implies that if her husband releases their son, she will resume the marriage.
10. Officers drinking toasts
Captain St. Jacques is French and wears the medal of the French Army Legion of Honor.
How he got into the US Army is not explained.
11. Colonel Yorke's medal
Colonel Yorke is wearing a US Army Medal of Honor, probably awarded for his service during
the US Civil War.
12. Picking up the laundry
Col. Yorke pulls out a note to pay her.
13. Paying for the laundry
Col. Yorke hands Mrs. Yorke an unusual note, a Confederate ten dollar note.
14. Confederate note front
The note reads "Confederate States of America, Ten Dollars, Richmond".
15. Confederate note back
The back of the note is fairly plain with the word "TEN" and the number "10".
16. Change on the table
The coins are real United States silver coins, including Peace silver dollars and Walking Liberty half dollars.
However, they are 20th century American coins and are out of place in a film set in 1879.
Examples of United States Peace silver dollar and Walking Liberty half dollar coins:
17. United States Peace silver dollar 1922
The peace dollar was made from 1921 to 1935.
18. United States Walking Liberty half dollar 1942-S (San Francisco)
The Walking Liberty half was made from 1916 to 1947.
The money is good here.
19. Mr. and Mrs. together again
The command decides to evacuate the women and children of the post to Fort Bliss.
They leave in a wagon caravan guarded by some soldiers.
20. Evacuating the women and children
The Indians attack the wagon caravan.
21. Indian attack
The Indians capture one wagon with children and take them to their village.
22. Cavalry attack
The soldiers successfully rescue the children and return to the post with the women and children.
23. Coming home
Mrs. Yorke waits for her husband who has been wounded in the fighting and is being carried on a litter.
24. Regimental parade
John Wayne as Lt. Col. Kirby Yorke
Maureen O'Hara as Mrs. Kathleen Yorke
Claude Jarman Jr. as Trooper Jefferson Yorke
Victor McLaglen as Sgt. Maj. Timothy Quincannon
J. Carrol Naish as Lt. Gen. Philip Sheridan
Peter Ortiz as Capt. St. Jacques
The Sons of the Pioneers as the Regimental Musicians
Writers: James Kevin Mc Guinness, James Warner Bellah (Saturday Evening Post story)