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Incredibly successful NBC western about a group of pioneers heading out west after the American Civil War. The show lasted eight years, in part thanks to the broad range of story lines that its Walking the Earth format provided. These days, however, it's more well-known for being the first two of those five famous words Gene Roddenberry used to pitch Star Trek: The Original Series.
Provides Examples Of:
- Adventure Towns
- Actor Existence Failure: Ward Bond unexpectedly died of a heart attack in 1961, necessitating a change to John Mc Intyre as the new lead. Interestingly, no episode actually deals with Maj. Adams' (Bond's character) leaving/retiring/dying, and so the next episode is Mc Intyre's character taking over from a tyrranical replacement played by Lee Marvin.
- Fair for Its Day: While still painting the settlers as mostly heroic people taming a wilderness, the show did not generally trade in "savage scalping redskin" depictions of Indians, and most characters were written as real people and not as national/ethnic stereotypes.
- Instrumental Theme Tune