BrianRxm Coins on Television 25/26
The Virginian - A Man Called Kane (1964)
Ranch employees find cache of Confederate British gold guineas
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"The Virginian" television series ran from 1962 to 1971.
 
The series was set on the Shiloh Ranch, a Wyoming cattle ranch in the period around 1898.
The main character is the ranch foreman and is based on the character in the 1929 film of the same title.
He is never named and the only thing known about him is that he served in the Confederate Army
during the Civil War.
 
This episode is titled "A Man Called Kane" and was first broadcast on May 6, 1964.
 
The story is about two ranch employees who find a cave and then a cache of British gold guinea coins.
The find is publicized in the newspapers and a federal agent appears to investigate the find.
The outlaw brother of one of the finders appears and attempts to steal the goods.
The Virginian
1. Title
 
Randy Benton is a ranch hand and Betsy Garth is the daughter of the ranch owner.
They are out riding and while looking for water find a cave which they enter.
 
The Virginian
2. Betsy and Randy explore the cave
 
Randy finds a gold coin and shows it to Betsy.
 
The Virginian
3. Randy's coin
 
The coin appears to be a prop coin.
 
Betsy then finds another coin and then finds something else.
 
The Virginian
4. Betsy's find
 
The pair head for the town sheriff and report the find and the skeleton.
 
The foreman and another hand visit the cave and bring back some items, including a belt buckle
with the lettering "R MacD" and the rest of the coin cache.
 
The Virginian
5. Pile of coins
 
A nice pile of gold prop coins on the table.
 
The sheriff calls a banker and holds a meeting.
 
The Virginian
6. The sheriff gets the details
 
The banker examines the coins and states that they are British guineas.
Guineas are gold coins minted from 1663 to 1813.
 
The find total is $960.75 as the coin count is 183 and guineas are worth 21 shillings or $5.25.
 
The sheriff plans to hold the coins for a month in case anyone claims them and then award them
to the finders.
 
The Virginian
7. Coin closeup
 
The prop coin appears to be a copy of an ancient coin.
 
A British gold guinea of King George III:
 
Britain guinea 1794
8. Great Britain gold guinea "spade" type 1794
 
Gold, 25.0mm x 24.5mm, 8.37gm
 
The banker identifies the belt buckle and the skeleton as belonging to a MacDermott, a recluse who
was a fanatical Confederate, and every so often would trade British guineas for American money.
 
The find is publicised in the regional newspapers and a federal agent Scott Duggan arrives.
He is from the "War Claims Division of the Federal Government" and is looking for Confederate assets.
 
Duggan states that MacDermott was a banker in Virginia during the Civil War who disappeared with
the gold being held by the bank along with $250,000 in negotiable securities.
 
Back at the ranch, Randy's long lost brother Johnny shows up and gets a job an the ranch.
 
The Virginian
9. Family reunion
 
Johnny is using the name Kane as he is an outlaw who is wanted in Texas for a bank robbery
and murder which he claims that he didn't do. He asks Randy for help.
Johnny is not sure if anyone is looking for him in Wyoming but he suspects that Duggan is.
 
Duggan visits the cave and finds little but scratched letters reading "SUSSEX".
He then visits the ranch foreman.
 
The Virginian
10. Duggan visits the foreman
 
Duggan gets permission to search for the missing securities.
 
Johnny's girlfriend Donna has also recently arrived and is working as a saloon entertainer.
 
The Virginian
11. Johnny and Donna
 
Johnny finds out that Duggan is a federal agent and gets his girlfriend, a saloon entertainer,
to find out what Duggan is looking for. She finds a letter appointing him a federal agent.
 
The letter reads:
 
Scott Duggan;
You are hereby assigned to this Bureau to explore and investigate the area known as
Shiloh Ranch in Wyoming to determine whether it is the Repository of approximately
two hundred and fifty thousand dollars worth of negotiable bonds, missing since the year 1866.
 
Donna tells Johnny that Duggan is not looking for him but for $250,000, giving Johnny an idea.
 
Meanwhile, Duggan visits the ranch.
 
The Virginian
12. The Virginian and Duggan discuss locations
 
Betsy arrives and suggests that the letters "SUSSEX" are actually "50 SSE X", meaning
"50 paces south-southeast of X".
 
The foreman suggests a Shoshoni Indian marker in the form of an 'X'.
 
The Virginian
13. 'X' marks the spot
 
Duggan paces off the 50 paces and digs up a metal box with the paper securities inside.
Johnny is watching and shoots Duggan in the back, kills him, and buries him.
Randy has followed his brother and hears the shooting.
 
A ranch hand returns from Texas and shows the foreman a wanted poster.
 
The Virginian
14. Wanted poster
 
The foreman realizes that the Johnny Benton on the poster is Kane and Randy Benton's brother.
 
Johnny shows Randy the securities.
 
The Virginian
15. Johnny asks Randy to come with him
 
Johnny suggests that as the securities belonged to the Confederacy which doesn't exist any more,
they are available to anyone and suggests that they both move out of the area.
 
The foreman rides up and is captured and tied up by Johnny.
Randy realizes that his brother is no good and refuses to go along with him.
Another ranch employee arrives, sees the situation, and shoots Johnnie.
 
The foreman, employee, and Randy ride off.
 
The Virginian
16. Riding off
Notes:
 
Cast:
James Drury as The Virginian
Randy Boone as Randy Benton
Roberta Shore as Betsy Garth
Jeremy Slate as Johnny Kane / Benton
Merry Anders as Donna Durrell
Dick Foran as Duggan
 
Director: William Witney
Writers: Dean Riesner, Charles Marquis Warren, Owen Wister (novel)
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