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Yancy Derringer


Yancy Derringer

Yancy Derringer
X Brands, Frances Bergen and Jock Mahoney in 1959.
Genre Western
Created by Mary Loos
Richard Sale
Written by Kellam de Forest
Marjorie Helper
Mary Loos
Richard Sale
Robert Spielman
Coles Trapnell
Directed by Richard Sale
William F. Claxton
Starring Jock Mahoney
X Brands
Frances Bergen
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 34
Executive producer(s) Warren Lewis
Don Sharpe
Running time 30 minutes
Original channel CBS
Original run October 2, 1958 (1958-10-02) – June 4, 1959 (1959-06-04)

Yancy Derringer is an American Western series that ran on CBS from 1958 to 1959, with Jock Mahoney (1919–1989) in the title role. The show was produced by Derringer Productions and filmed in Hollywood by Desilu Productions. Derringer Productions consisted of half interest for Warren Lewis and Don Sharpe as executive producers, and a quarter interest to Jock Mahoney for starring in the series, and a quarter interest to Richard Sale and Mary Loos, husband and wife, as creators.[1] Desilu had just completed the 1956 series The Adventures of Jim Bowie which was also mostly set in New Orleans. The show's sponsor was Johnson Wax, now S. C. Johnson, and CLEAR floorwax was a regular sponsor.

The Sales based the series on a 1938 short story that Richard Sale had written. In the 1930s, Sale was one of the highest paid pulp writers. Which story was never mentioned, but it was about a destitute aristocrat and troublemaker who returns to New Orleans three years after the Civil War. In the story, Derringer has no first name; "Yancy" was added for the TV series.[1]


Yancy Derringer is a gentleman adventurer. He is a former Confederate Army captain who has returned to New Orleans, Louisiana in 1868, three years after the end of the Civil War. Widely respected by all parts of New Orleans society, he is recruited by the Federal city administrator, John Colton, to work as a secret agent at no pay, and only Colton knows of his special role. Often at the beginning of an episode, Colton, a former Union Army colonel, asks Yancy to help solve New Orleans' present threat and, often at the end of the episode, he arrests Yancy for breaking the law to do it. Yancy agrees, because the United States is one nation again.

Yancy owns a riverboat, the Sultana. His weapons of choice are a four-barrel Sharps Derringer gun carried in his hat, another up his left sleeve, and a knife in his belt. He is an expert marksman. He also carries a cane with a hidden sword and is said to have iron fists: one punch and his opponent remains unconscious for a day. (The belt buckle with a derringer was never one of Yancy's props.) Yancy dresses elegantly, most often in a white suit with a long coat, ruffled white shirt, a silk vest, a sash instead of a belt, a black string tie, and a white flat-topped straw hat with curled brim.

Yancy's sidekick, Pahoo-Ka-Ta-Wah, is a silent Pawnee American Indian who communicates only by hand gestures. Pa-hoo-Ka-Ta-Wah is Pawnee for "Wolf who stands in water." Although Pahoo is short on talk, he is long on action. Beneath a blanket wrapped about his body, he carries a sawed-off double-barreled shotgun loaded with split buckshot, which he wields in emergencies. Most of the time however, he uses a throwing knife sheathed on his back.

Yancy and Pahoo live at the family plantation, Waverly. Yancy's recurring love interest is Madame Francine (played by Frances Bergen, mother of Candice Bergen), the strong-willed, beautiful owner of a members-only gambling house in New Orleans, her real name is Nora and she's actually Irish. Bridget Malone (played by Margaret Field, mother of Sally Field) is an Irish lass recently arrived from Ireland, originally endangered by the ship's crew but rescued by Derringer. Miss Mandarin, Mei Ling, a former love interest and close friend of Yancy, is the proprietor of his favorite place to dine, the Sazerac Restaurant. Yancy also sometimes dines, usually al fresco, at the Charter House restaurant, whose specialty is French cuisine, and gambles at the Blackjack Club. Most of Yancy's out-of-town associates stay at the King Louis Hotel. Yancy had a brother David who was killed in the Civil War, and his father Yancy, Sr. had also died during the war.

Cast and characters

Madame Francine's Club hostesses

  • Patricia Blair - Goldy
  • Charlene James - Pearl Girl
  • Joan Boston - Opal
  • Jane Burgess - Chrystal

Guest stars


1. Return to New Orleans

In 1868, Yancy arrives home, penniless, after the war, only to discover he has a wife, Amanda Eaton (Julie Adams), he did not know about and that his family plantation, Waverly, has been turned in a gambling den. John Colton, the city administrator of New Orleans, helps to return the Waverly to Yancy. John Colton asks Yancy to help rebuild New Orleans as his special agent.
b&w: 02-Oct-1958 w: Mary Loos (as Mary Sale) & Richard Sale d: Richard Sale

2. Gallatin Street

Yancy helps a sea captain who was cheated out of his money in a dive on notorious Gallatin Street.
b&w: 09-Oct-1958

3. Ticket to Natchez

gs: Marie Windsor (Billie Joe)
City administrator John Colton entrusts Yancy with an army payroll that is to be taken to Natchez, Mississippi on Yancy's riverboat, the Sultana, but robbers have other plans.
b&w: 23-Oct-1958

4. An Ace Called Spade

Yancy is relieved to find that a newspaper story about administrator Colton's death is premature, but fears that Colton will be the victim of trickery in an upcoming duel.
b&w: 30-Oct-1958

5. A Bullet for Bridget

We meet for the first time, Bridget Malone, Madame Francine's cousin from Ireland, who while visiting New Orleans decides that Yancy is to be her future husband. Special guest star is his real life wife, Margaret Field (as Maggie Mahoney) as Bridget Malone.
b&w: 06-Nov-1958

6. The Belle from Boston

After administrator Colton hangs a member of an outlaw gang, the others decide to take revenge on his visiting sister.
b&w: 13-Nov-1958

7. The Loot from Richmond

A messenger is sent to New Orleans by a former general in the Civil War, but is killed before he can reveal what happened to a fortune that was taken from Richmond, Virginia.
b&w: 20-Nov-1958

8. The Saga of Lonesome Jackson

A wealthy but lonely man who has come to New Orleans looking for a wife asks Yancy to help him.
b&w: 27-Nov-1958

9. Memo to a Firing Squad

An army officer with vengeance in his heart tries to stop a presidential pardon. Without the pardon, a man who is scheduled to die before a firing squad. John M. Pickard, who plays Lieutenant Weems, is among the guest stars.
b&w: 04-Dec-1958

10. Three Knaves from New Haven

Shop owners receive threats of violence if they refuse to sell their property to three strangers. Special guest star is his real life wife, Margaret Field (as Maggie Mahoney) as Bridget Malone.
b&w: 11-Dec-1958

11. Marble Fingers

gs: Kasey Rogers (Blackeyed Sue)
Yancy tries to find out who's responsible for recent grave robberies.
b&w: 18-Dec-1958

12. Old Dixie

gs: Louise Fletcher (Unknown)
Special Christmas Episode. Villains go after Yancy's dog Dixie after Yancy's father dies leaving a note that only the dog knows where the family pre-war fortune is buried. Special guest star is his real life wife, Margaret Field (as Maggie Mahoney) as Bridget Malone.
b&w: 25-Dec-1958

13. Two of a Kind

Yancy and Pahoo are framed for a series of crimes, and now face execution.
b&w: 01-Jan-1959

14. Nightmare on Bourbon Street

A mysterious mad bomber steals explosives and threatens to blow up the entire city of New Orleans.
b&w: 08-Jan-1959

15. The Fair Freebooter

Yancy must deal with a female pirate, Coco LaSalle, who has stolen his shirt he ordered from Paris. He goes after his shirt into the deadly swamps. Coltan tags along to recover a stolen necklace from representatives of the Mexican government.
b&w: 15-Jan-1959

16. Mayhem at the Market

Merchants are in such fear for their lives that Yancy gets no cooperation in his attempt to break a new protection racket.
b&w: 22-Jan-1959

17. The Night the Russians Landed

A visiting Russian noble appears to have become a target for murder.
b&w: 29-Jan-1959

18. A Game of Chance

Yancy suspects foul play when a lottery winner dies before she can collect.
b&w: 05-Feb-1959

19. Panic in Town

With a serial attacker is loose in New Orleans. He attacks women and cut their hair. The authorities are seemingly powerless. A group of vigilantes decides to take over New Orleans.
b&w: 12-Feb-1959

20. Hell and High Water

gs: Charles Bronson (Rogue Donovan), Patricia Cutts (Lady Charity)
It looks like New Orleans is going to be flooded. Yancy comes up with a risky scheme to save New Orleans. John Colton is taken prisoner by Lady Charity to protect her plantation property from Yancy's risky scheme. Meanwhile Rogue Donovan tries to kill Yancy.
b&w: 19-Feb-1959

21. The Louisiana Dude

gs: Hillary Brooke (Julia Bulette), John Cliff (Nat Greer), Harry Swoger (Big Jim Ogden), Addison Richards (Judge Harper), Steve Pendleton (Sheriff Anderson), Woodrow Chambliss (Captain Tom), James Anderson (Fitch), Booth Colman (Henry Duval)
Yancy wins a half interest in a silver mine. The Sultana's boiler blows up, and Yancy travels to Virginia City, Nevada hoping to get five thousand dollars needed for a new broiler. Yancy discovers that his new partner is a beautiful woman.
b&w: 26-Feb-1959 w: Coles Trapnell d: William F. Claxton

22. Longhair

When famed General George Armstrong Custer visits New Orleans, Yancy discovers that he is being stalked by an Indian seeking revenge for a past wrong. We meet for the first time, Colorado Charlie, Indian Scout.
b&w: 05-Mar-1959

23. Thunder on the River

gs: Patricia Barry ()
Yancy decides to help a fellow riverboat owner whose fleet is being sabotaged by rivals trying to corner the market on river traffic.
b&w: 12-Mar-1959

24. The Gun That Murdered Lincoln

Yancy is unjustly accused of having provided the weapon used by presidential assassin John Wilkes Booth.
b&w: 19-Mar-1959

25. Collector's Item

To assist a woman in her crusade to provide a home for the city's orphans, Yancy comes up with a scheme that requires the aid of photography pioneer Mathew Brady.
b&w: 26-Mar-1959

26. Fire on the Frontier

gs: Robert Carricart (Thaddeus Stevens)
Yancy's Indian friend Pahoo becomets an important element in efforts to prevent a war with the Pawnee tribes.
b&w: 02-Apr-1959

27. Duel at the Oaks

Yancy is sentenced to hang for killing a man in a duel. John Vivyan guest starred as LeBow.
b&w: 09-Apr-1959

28. The Wayward Warrior

Trying to stop some gun smugglers, Yancy has a run-in with a boxing champion and a re-match with a female river pirate, Coco LaSalle.
b&w: 16-Apr-1959

29. A State of Crisis

With the city of New Orleans plagued by counterfeit money, General Hugh Morgan arrives in New Orleans with orders promoting John Colton to a post in Washington and giving Morgan command of the city. Walter Coy guest stars as Slade Donovan.
b&w: 30-Apr-1959 w: Coles Trapnell d: Edward Denault

30. Outlaw at Liberty

Yancy is at a loss to figure out what's going on when a marshal he knows charges an old wartime friend with murder.
b&w: 07-May-1959

31. V as in Voodoo

Yancy tries to combat superstition when the city is terrorized by a mysterious voodoo priestess.
b&w: 14-May-1959

32. The Quiet Firecracker

Yancy's good friend, Miss Mandarin, is accused of smuggling opium into the city inside firecrackers.
b&w: 21-May-1959

33. Gone But Not Forgotten

gs: Joyce Jameson (Bonnie Mason)
A friend of Yancy's comes to visit from Virginia City, with news that his silver mine is doing well, but that there is a gravestone in the cemetery with Yancy's name on it. Dayton Lummis plays Judge Randall.
b&w: 28-May-1959

34. Two Tickets to Promontory

On a train trip to a celebration of the completion of the transcontinental railroad, Yancy discovers a saboteur.
b&w: 04-Jun-1959

DVD release

On October 9, 2012, Timeless Media Group released the complete series on DVD in Region 1 for the very first time.[2]


External links

  • Internet Movie Database
  • National Firearms Museum - Sharps Derringer
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