04 Feb

"Trail of Vengence"

Back while working for Harry Gilliam at Bryan's Channel 3, Frank Q. Dobbs was our local newsman.  Frank was a Huntsville boy whose mother was warden of the ladies prison.  He had long attempted to write a script that the producers of "Gunsmoke" would use.  His favorite, which was turned-down, was the story of a farmer/rancher whose land was covetd by a ruthless owner of an adjoining property.  He finally. talked the crew of channel 3 to contribute $16.00 and their time to produce the film on silent 16mm film.  Our art director, John Scoggin, created the art work for the title and played the Sheriff; our program manager, Jim Mitchell, played the rancher; Wallace Taylor, our sports man, was the gunfighter/killer; our tech crew filled in for the other parts, Frank's wife was my wife and I got to be "The Pilgrim".  Frank was cameraman and he developed film in our channel 3 film lab. the story was pretty simple.  One morning as the Pilgrim was plowing his fied, the rancher sent his hoodlums to convince him to abandon his claim. As the bad guys were beating the poor farmer up, the wife dashes out of the house and fires a 12-gauge into the air.  The gunfighter reacts, draws, fires and kills her.  After burying his wife, the Pilgrim straps on a pistol and begins his "Trail of Vengence".  We borrowed pistols, removed the slugs and loaded the cartridges with gunpowder, paper wadding and sealed that with rubber cement.  We shot the whole film on two Saturdays both in Millican (a small community near Bryan) and at Six Flags Over Texas in Dallas.  in the film, after the Pilgrim had done away with the whole dastardly bunch, as he was removing his holster at the gravesite of his beloved, the Sheriff sneaks up and starles the man into grabbing for his weapon.  

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