Wednesday, August 12, 2015


Around 1870, Tobias Jones and his young "ward" Midge of Coopertown stowed away on a wagon train headed to California, which was led by Major Seth Adams.  Toby had been working in the Coopertown livery stable and had a fondness for "cough medicine".  Midge was an orphan who was going to be forced to live in an orphanage after her father died in the Civil War and her mother died from being heart-sick about that.  Neither Midge nor Toby had anybody else in their lives and turned to each other for emotional support.

During the trek West, Toby nearly got hanged for a murder he didn't commit, despite Midge's entreaties that he was innocent.  Eventually he was saved by the confession of the real killer, and so Tobias Jones and Midge were able to continue on their way to California.  

Midge's love for Toby was more paternal in the beginning, but as she grew older it became something more.  She was fifteen when they began their journey together and within a few years she had become a young woman.  And her love for Toby led her to become his wife despite the age difference.  (He was fifty-one at the time they crossed the prairie.)

'Wagon Train' - "The Tobias Jones Story"

It is unclear how many children Tobias and Midge Jones had before he passed away, but one of them continued a family tree which included several young women down through the years, four of whom deserve special attention....

Their grand-daughter Doreen was mixed up with Ma Gantry and her family of low-lifes, who were brought to justice by farmer turned bounty hunter Dave Barrett.  When she grew older, Doreen married a man named Lang and they named one of their twin daughters after Doreen (who probably died in childbirth.)  

As a child, Dorrie was rescued by Superman when the Mole Men came up from their subterranean realm in the desert region separating Metropolis from Los Angeles.  In her teens, Dorrie Lang couldn't resist the lure of the dark side and she got mixed up with trouble on the Lover's Lane near the Sunset Strip in Hollywood.

'The Manhunter' - "The Ma Gantry Gang"
"Superman And The Mole Men"
'77 Sunset Strip' - "Lover's Lane"


The other Lang daughter, Janet, kept out of trouble for the most part while growing up.  As a teen-aged girl, Janet lived in the Los Angeles area where she was on the periphery of the music business.  Becoming disillusioned with the scene, she moved to San Francisco to attend college and remained there for the rest of her life.

To support herself, she worked as a telephone operator and as a tour guide.  It was through that job that she met her husband, a man named Johnson, who was able to provide a very good lifestyle for Janet.  Having once led tours past the St. Gregory Hotel, Janet was now able to stay there as a guest.  She and her husband also made frequent trips to Las Vegas, where they always stayed at the Montecito.

'Getting Together' - "The Great Pretender"
'MacMillan & Wife' - "Terror Times Two"
'The Streets Of San Francisco' - "Letters From The Grave"
'Hotel' - "Hearts And Minds"
'Las Vegas' - "Pilot"


Finally, there was Arlene Galway, descended from Janet Johnson.  Even after several centuries, the family still had roots in San Francisco and this proximity to the headquarters for Starfleet fed Arlene's desire to attend the Academy.

Unfortunately, during a supply run to Gamma Hydra IV in 2267, Lt. Galway was a member of the landing party which all contracted a rapid aging disease caused by the radiation from a passing comet.  Because of her metabolism, Lt. Galway aged far faster than the other members of the landing party and she died before a cure could be found.

'Star Trek' - "The Deadly Years"

All of these roles were played by Beverly Washburn.  There are more of her characters that could have been included, but these four had an organic connection between them.....

And the thing I like best about it is that it connects 'Wagon Train' to 'Star Trek', which was pitched as being 'Wagon Train To The Stars'.......


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