Gunsmoke (1955–1975): Season 16, Episode 6 - Snow Train: Part 1 - full transcript

Matt, Doc and Festus are on a train in the snow-capped Rockies. Indians stop the train by blocking the tracks in front and behind the train. Someone aboard sold the Indians a bad batch of whiskey that has killed or blinded those who consumed it. The Indians want the guilty turned over to them and will attack in the morning. Matt has his hands full keeping order as the train occupants want to take justice into their own hands. Matt makes a desperate decision. Festus will create a diversion while Matt gets off the train and heads to the nearest telegraph station, which is miles away. The ploy works but three Indian braves, not fooled by it, are in pursuit of Matt.

Announcer: Gunsmoke, starring
James Arness as Matt Dillon.


Can't you see what
I'm talking about, Doc?

Don't you understand?

Coming up onto
Mile High Turn, folks.

Prettiest view in nine states.

You see? That law
feller didn't have to...

Hush up and look at the view.

Festus: I done saw it.

He didn't have to call on you
after Matthew got done talking

and I got done
doing my talking...

Yeah, when you got
done doing your talking,

everybody in the courtroom including
the prosecutor was stone deaf.

Well, Doc, you get
a free trip to Denver.

Get to stay in a
first-class hotel.

Gotta look at the bright side.

Well, the dark side is what I
remember in the courtroom there.

By the time he got through
testifying for six hours.

- Doing what?
- Testifying.

I didn't do no such a thing.

All I done was tell him
everything I knowed.

Now, and even if I did, when
a feller asks you who you are

and all the things you been a doing
as a Deputy United States Marshal

leading up to when that feller got
himself shot in the Long Branch,

you gotta start clean back
at the beginning, don't ya?

See what I mean? Don't ever use one
word when six'll muddle up everything.

All right, I call. I'm short.

I call too.

A little straight.

To the ace.

This game is getting
too rich for my blood.

All right, how much am I short?

An even 50 short.

I hope that Dodge bank
will be cashing your notes

at the same speed
you're making them up.

Are you questioning my honesty?

Oh, it never entered my mind.

Now, who said all the
buffalo disappeared?

Instead of looking at buffalo,
why don't you shuffle the cards?

Enjoying the trip, ma'am?

I don't remember a
more enjoyable one.

Well, if it's any consolation,
your husband is winning.

Who said he's my husband?

'Bout time for a
little fuel myself.

There's a nice view to your...

Quite a view out there, ladies.

Quite a view in
here too, conductor.

Pardon me, ladies.

Are we on time, conductor?

Pretty close, ma'am. We'll be
in Dodge before dark tomorrow.

Oh, Scott, look.

Your ears are
still bothering you.

Just swallow hard, Mrs. Coleman.

Relieves the pressure
on the ears in a twinkling.

Thank you. I'll be all right.

I can ask that doctor if he
has something for you to take.

No, don't bother him now, Scott.


Ain't that something,
Mr. Pennigrath?

Many times as I see
it, I never get tired of it.

Well, I understand, Mr. Lucas.

The Lord's good handiwork.

Oh, Sarah, look.

- Oh.
- Isn't that adorable?

Isn't this view just marvelous?

Well, Matt, for all the good I did at
that trial, I could have sent a letter.

Well, the verdict came out
right, Doc. That's what counts.

I'll tell you something. I had me a big
hand in the way that thing come out.

The way that feller was lying
his blamed head off there...

Will you quit stomping those
feet? You're making me nervous.

Well, they're cold, Doc.

Well, 'course they're cold.

It's always cold at this
altitude in the wintertime.

You look out there, it must be below
zero. Look at the frost on the windows.

It's cold.

Well, how come my
head's so hot then?

Well, sit down and
I'll explain it to you.

See, the reason for that
is that the cold air is cold

and it stays down at the
bottom around your feet, you see,

and the hot air rises up
around the hot air in your head.

All right. You don't have
to start to hoorah me.

I'm not. I'm explaining
it to you. I'm trying to.

You see? When the stove
heats up the air in the car,

all the cold air stays down at
the bottom around your feet,

and then hot air
rises up to the top,

and your feet get cold,
and your head stays warm.

Well, how does the cold air know when
it's cold and ought to stay down yonder

and the hot air know that it's hot
and ought to be rising up yonder?

Oh, don't you know that?

- No, do you?
- Certainly.

- Why?
- I'm not gonna tell ya.

Matthew, is he hoorahin' me?

No, no, he's telling
you the truth, Festus.

Should have bought yourself some
of these warm boots like we did.

- Yeah.
- Oh, no.

Ain't nobody gonna talk me
into spending my "pure dime"

on no old pair of boots.

Wait a minute. Your what?

My "pure dime"!

Of course, I don't
expect no grouches

full of hot air to know
what that means.

Maybe you'd be kind
enough to explain it to me.

Well, sure.

No, wait a minute.
I'll explain it to you.

Per diem. It's not "pure
dime." It's per diem,

and that is a Latin
expression, is what it is...

- Well, of course.
- And it means this.

It means a daily allowance

that is given to you for food
and lodging and things like that,

and any government
agency pays that to a citizen

when they render
a service. Per diem!

Exactly what I said.

- Well?
- Did you win?

Uh, well, it cost me
a bundle to find out

a man who looks like a
professional gambler probably is.

Just how much did you lose?

Uh, well, too much.

Oh, Floyd. You just have no
willpower when it comes to gambling.

Oh, come on now.

You ought to be more sensible.
You work too hard for your money.

Don't worry, Ada.

Wild country out there.

Hmm. I'll be it's
good cougar huntin'.

Look out ahead!

We hit something.


Festus, stay here.

I think I got one.

Oh, for the love of
heaven, what's happening?

Hold your fire. Hold your fire.

- There's Indians out there.
- We have a right to defend ourselves.

- That don't make it...
- Hold your fire. Put the guns up.

- Yes, sir.
- The Indians aren't attacking.

I don't want anybody
firing unless they do.

Marshal, the tracks
ahead have been blocked.

I know it.

- Doc, how is she?
- I don't know yet.

What are they stopping
the train for, Marshal?

There's a hundred
Indians out there.

Doctor, you stay here and
keep these people calm.


- Put them rifles up.
- All right, folks. You heard the Marshal.

Just say in your seats
and no more shootin'.

Get back in your
seats, all of ya.

Let's find out what
this is all about first.

If it's about Indians, it ain't
good. You can bet on that.

All right, now just calm down.

Appear to be Sioux, Matthew.

Come on.

I thought we were sitting ducks.

Well, they're not
shooting at anybody.

If they'd wanted to wreck this
train, they could have taken out a rail.


You know, I think I know
who that is. Red Willow.

That Sioux chief
from Stone Ridge.


I might go out and have
a talk with him, Festus.

Get back inside and see that
nobody gets nervous with a gun.

I'll do it.

Hey, Doc. Would you like a hand?

I know, I know. Thank
you. I'll let you know.

Plenty of blankets and such
in the baggage car, Doctor.

Stone Ridge Reservation, huh?

Tough bunch.

Really tough.

What do you reckon
it is they want?

No telling about
Indians. Especially Sioux.

You are Red Willow?

Do you speak English?

Maybe I can make you understand.

You'll be making a big mistake if
you don't get those trees off the track.

They will stay!

Anybody leaving
train will be killed!

If anything happens to any of
the passengers aboard this train,

you'll all be held accountable.

The train will not move.

Troops will be sent out from
Fort Dodge to punish you.

We are not afraid of soldiers.

Well, it seems to me
that it makes more sense

for you and your father

to come in to Dodge
City with me and testify...

The men will hang?

If they're aboard
this train, I'll find 'em.

You have my word on it.

They'll be charged with murder.

If they're found guilty,
they'll be punished.

Some of braves with us.

One lost his brother.

Another, his father is blind.

Talk to them.

Tell them that I am as
concerned as they are

that the guilty men
be found and punished.

We will talk to others.

Are you about six
months along, maybe?

Yeah, just about that, Doctor.

Doctor, I... I lost
my other baby.

You lost the baby?

A son, Doctor.

A... A fine boy.

Had blonde hair. It was curly.

- It was my fault.
- No, Scott...

- Ada, it was my fault.
- No, it wasn't, Scott.

I took her with me in the Black Hills,
prospecting, about two years back.

But we were together, Scott,

and that's the way I wanted it.

It was my fault. We
should have stayed put.


Doc, you're not gonna leave her.

You're gonna have
to be very quiet.

I don't want her
moving around any at all.

I'll be close.

How's the woman?

Well, she's carrying a baby, Matt,
and I'm pretty concerned about her.

And I'll tell you something.

She'd be a lot better
off almost anyplace else.

Doc, we got quite
a problem going.

I want you to be in on it.

What do they want, Marshal?

They got some scalping
on their minds, I'll bet.

All right, folks, now just
sit down and be calm,

and I'll try to explain it you.

Now, these are Sioux Indians
out here, off the reservation.

Now, they claim that two men
sold 'em poisoned whiskey.

Three of their braves are
dead, and five of 'em are blind.

That's horrible.

What's that got to
do with us, Marshal?

Well, they claim that the two
men got on this train in Denver.

- They don't know who they are...
- What do you mean don't know who they are?

They want us to
turn 'em over to 'em.

Yeah, but how do we
know they're telling the truth?

Maybe they just want to board
the train, do some robbing,

get hold of the women?

All right, that's enough now.

I'm not gonna turn 'em over
even if I knew who the men were.

But I'll tell you one thing.

All of you folks are gonna
have some explaining to do

about where you were just
before you got on this train.

Ha. What about
right now, Marshal?

If they'd wanted to
hurt innocent people,

they could have derailed the
train instead of going to the trouble

of putting up this barricade.

Well, they're sure not
settling for any standoff.

What you're really saying
is we're trapped here.

We're gonna have
to stall for a while,

but I personally think
that the reservation police

are gonna be out
looking for 'em.

They might not miss anybody
for days on that reservation.

In the meantime, I'm gonna be
talking some more with Red Willow.

I fought Injuns in the army.

I never heard no talk from
them that made any sense.

I better get back, Matt.

I'm not sure you know what it
means to be stranded up in this country

this time of year, Marshal.

When the sun goes down,
so does the temperature.

Drop of 40, 50 degrees during
a single night is not unusual.

We're just gonna have
to make the best of it.

I just wish the marshal had a
chance to know what we're doing.

I'm the conductor on
this train, not the marshal.

I'll take full responsibility
on getting us out of here.

I don't know how
good this is gonna be,

but it'll be nourishing.

Thank you.

Doc: That's it.

They're getting guns.

I hope you're not
planning on using those.

Just keeping 'em handy in
case we need them, Doctor.

Well, they're all coming back.

I hope they've talked it over
and decided to listen to reason.

What if they ain't?

I hate to think
about that, Festus.

There aren't more than a
dozen guns on board here.

If they attack, we
don't have a chance.

Want me to go with you?

No, I think it's better
if you stay here.

Some of those folks
are pretty scared.

I'll... I'll do it, Matthew.

Good luck to you.


Jump aboard, Marshal!

Give me that gun!

Get up here!

Get the doctor.

Right over here.

Matthew? I heard some shooting.

Give him a hand, Festus.

Want him right here.

- Easy.
- Let me help you, Doc.


Was this your idea?

The train is my responsibility.

From now on, the comfort of the
passengers is your only responsibility.


Get me out of here!

All right, everybody get down.

All right, down.

Stay down.

I thought we had a chance
before that shooting started.

But I'm afraid it's
past talking now.

What'd he say, Matthew?

Gave us until morning to
turn over those two men.

Supposing we don't?

Well, they didn't
say, but you...

you don't have to
use much imagination.

If we don't freeze
tonight, we die tomorrow.

All right, get those
windows sealed up.

Use anything you can.
Blankets, whatever you can find.

I once spent three
nights up here, Marshal,

a rock slide
blocking the tracks.

A doctor took off
two of my toes.

We can get along
without that kind of talk.

There'll be help.

When the train doesn't come in
time, there'll be help, won't there?

Mister, they call
this a snow train.

A two-day delay is not unusual.

If we get caught in a blizzard or
a rock slide crosses the tracks,

they'll start looking for
us after the second day.

Maybe after three.

Ask questions in Dodge, Marshal?
You better start asking right now.

And then what?

And kick their worthless
souls right out of this train.


- You got a better answer?
- I think so.

Warm up a pot of coffee and see
to the comfort of your passengers.


I... I didn't think it
was a good idea.

I'm sorry.

It's not important now.

It's bad, ain't it, Doc?

I don't know yet.

Doc, I've been thinking
about something.


If the Almighty's
making a choice...


Her and that baby.

That's kinda more
important than me.

See anything?

I keep thinking I seen
'em at the edge of the trees,

but it's only the
shadows on the snow.

Whether you see
'em out there or not,

you can bet they're there.


Then of course there's my
work at the orphanage, but...

it's hardly work.
Not with children.

My whole point is you win,
but it goes out just was fast.

It doesn't seem to be real
money. To plan ahead with, I mean.

I got this fella Wickes hooked
for plenty if we ever get out of here.

Here you are, Matthew. You think
you're gonna be warm enough now?

Oh, yeah, I'll be fine,
Festus. Thank you.

Doc? How are they?

Well, Matt, I know there's
nothing you can do about this.

They'll be a lot better off when they
get someplace where it's warmer.

Marshal, do you think maybe you
could go up and talk to the Indians again?

Let 'em know what's at stake.

They don't care what's at stake.

All they care about's
the two men they're after.

They gotta be
colder than we are.

I mean, out there in the open.

Freezing by this time.

No, no. The only thing they'll do
is bury theirselves under that snow

and them buffalo robes and hides

just like they been doing
on them hunting parties

ever since they was
old enough to toddle.

That's what they'll do.

Could we fight 'em? I
mean, sneak out of the car.

What men we have would
catch 'em by surprise.

You don't surprise
the Sioux Indians.

Marshal, it's 20 miles on foot.

I don't see your
chances of making it.

It's only ten miles if I go
by way of Glacier Pass.

Oh, Festus, here.

Take this.

Matthew, you ought to have it.

There's over a hundred
Indians out there, Festus.

If I don't make it, you're gonna
need every gun you can get.

When that moon
starts coming out,

Marshal, it's gonna be like
daylight out on that snow.

I know it.

I plan to be long gone
before the moon comes up.

I imagine you've had some
experience with Indians?

- Some.
- If they gave us till morning,

what do you think
they're gonna do?

Fire the train.

Get us out in the open,
then point to any two of us.

Skin us out, guilty or not.

What do you mean?

Skin out two of us.

Tie us up to a tree
and start cutting.

Attention, everyone.

There are two men aboard
this train guilty of murder.

Yet no one's been
asking any questions.

Don't you find that strange?

Why is that?

There's a strong possibility by
morning this car may be burned,

and we'll be out in the
cold facing those Indians.

Now, Mr., uh...
Billy. Just Billy.

As I was about to say, uh,
Mr. Billy here knows very well

that something dreadful can
happen to innocent people

if we just sit around
here doing nothing.

Now, I propose if
anything is to happen

that we try to see to it that it
happens to the guilty parties.

Except you don't
know who they are.

Well, my lad, that should not
be too difficult to determine.

Let's find out who we all are.

What business we had in
Denver. Where we stayed.

If any of us had time to take an
overnight trip to that reservation.

Suppose I start it off.

My name's Wickes. Sam Wickes.

I buy yearlings
in the cow towns.

I spent the entire week in
Denver. That can be proven.

Stayed at the Crawford Hotel.

In fact, Mr. Pennigrath and I
had dinner most every night.

Neither one of us had time to take a
wagon, go up the Stone Ridge Reservation.

I can vouch for Mr. Pennigrath,
and I'm sure he can vouch for me.

Now, who else wants to speak up?

Mr. Wickes here
can vouch for me.

That's very true. We're
narrowing it down.

Narrowing what down?

Simply trying to identify the guilty
men by process of elimination.

All right, what are you
gonna do if you find 'em?

Turn 'em over to the Indians?

Well, at best, we're
all pretty curious.

I, for one, agree that anyone selling
poisoned whiskey to the Indians

deserves everything they get.

She's absolutely right.

I'll tell you this, Marshal.

If it comes down to them
or us, it ain't no choice at all.

Well, we've got a
choice, and I'm taking it.

So happens up here at the next
relay station there's a telegraph.

Now, I figure I can get
there in four or five hours.

If I can, I can be back here
by morning with soldiers.

How are you gonna get off this
train without them seeing you?

Well, we just have to divert the
Indians' attention for a few seconds

while I jump off the back end.

My deputy Festus Haggin and
Mr. Coleman are gonna help me with that.

Uh, Doc? Better tell the
folks not to pay no never mind

what we're fixin'
to do out here.

We're just gonna put on a
show for them Indians out yonder.

Come on.

Let go of me now!

Let go of me now!

Put it down! Now put it down!

Marshal told you to
stay in the passenger car

with the rest of
them passengers.

Go on now.

The conductor said
you wanted to see me.

Yes, Reverend.

Reverend, it's kinda touch
and go with this fella over here.

I think you can help him.

He thinks he's dying.

He's asked for you.

Is he dying?

Well, I'm not sure.
He may pull through.

But I'd like you to comfort him.


We could all be
dead by tomorrow.

I can't go that far.

Why not?

I work the trains.

Confidence man.


Regardless of that...

you can be of service to him.

To cheat people out of
their money is one thing.

To deceive a man
who's meeting his maker?

I'm not asking
you to deceive him.

I'm asking you to read to him.

- Read?
- From the Bible.


I want you to read a
passage from the Bible to him.

But I... No.

Might do you some good.

Look, I just carry it around.

You never read it?

No. I don't go that far.

Think I said that.

There's a few things
I could say to you.

There's no time for that.

Now, you go over there

and you do what any
decent man would do.

The 23rd.

23rd Psalm.

Coleman. Coleman.


Your wife will sleep now
with that sedative I gave her,

and I want you to go in the other
car and get yourself some rest.

I'll let you know if
there's any change.

Thank you, Doctor, for
everything you're doing.

You go on now.
I'll watch her close.

I've got a lot to
account for, Reverend.

Well, we all do.

We all do.

"The Lord is my shepherd.

I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie
down in green pastures.

He leadeth me
beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul.

He leadeth me in the
paths of righteousness

for his namesake.

Yea, though I walk through
the valley of the shadow of death,

I will fear no evil.

For thou art with me.

Thy rod and thy
staff, they comfort me."

It was a stupid thing we done.

We're gonna get caught.

Sure as we're sitting here,
we're gonna get caught.

We will if you keep
talking like that.

Don't you understand?
We just gotta act natural.

How can you act natural
with that Wickes fella

asking all them questions about
where we been and what we been doing?

He ain't asking 'em now.

And if he starts up again,
we just stick to our story.

He'll get started again.

You can bet your life on that.

Once the sun comes out and the
marshal ain't back with them soldiers,

he'll get something started.

Look, I keep telling
ya, don't lose your head.

He can't prove nothin', Al.

Boy, I wish we hadn't done it.

Oh, my, I wish
we hadn't done it.

Well, I wish we hadn't either.

But wishin' ain't
gonna help anything.

Just get your mind off it.

- How?
- I don't know. Think about something else.

Hunting or girls or how good it's
gonna be when we get back home again.

Anything except them Indians.

The moon is up.

Snow looks like
frosting on a cake.

It's so peaceful.


Here we sit, the two of us,

time slipping away.

This moment and
perhaps a little more

may be all that we
have left in our lives.

It's not real.

There in the trees,
men are waiting.

Men we don't even
know who might kill us.

I used to wonder
where and when...

where my life would end.

And here I am.

And in a hundred
years of imagining...

all the possibilities
of where, how...

I never dreamed it
would be here like this.

Are you afraid?

I was.

And I think I might
be again, but not now.

I think that's strange too.

I think I ought
to tell you, Mae...

I've always envied you.

Envied me?

You were always so pretty.

You had so many beaus.

- When we were in school...
- Oh, my.

And I always envied you.

You were so strong
and clever and...

you never seemed
to need a single soul.

How many years have
we known one another?

50 years?

More like 60.

Oh, Sarah.

I'm so glad we're together.

So am I.

I wonder about the marshal.

Could he have gotten
through? Could he?

I don't know.


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