"Bonanza" TV series (1960) — The Corral Rocks Shack
Apologies for starting off with a shot of a dead guy, but if you're a fan of Westerns, you're probably used to it. This is one of the best screen shots I could find of the Corral Rocks Shack, a tiny but surprisingly durable building that played a key role in the saga of the Iverson Western street.
"Along Came Jones" (1945): First sign of the Iverson town set
The on-screen history of the Western street begins and ends with the Corral Rocks Shack. While the Shack has been largely overlooked, it was the first building associated with the Iverson Ranch town set to appear on screen, and it was also the last.
"Night Raiders" (1952)
During the years the town set was in place, from 1945 to 1957, the Shack's main role consisted of sneaking into the background on occasion. Here's an example from the Whip Wilson movie "Night Raiders."
"The Cisco Kid" TV series (1954)
Here's a blurry background appearance by the Shack in the TV show "The Cisco Kid." The Western street was still in place when this sequence was shot, and Cisco was running through the corral near the Livery Stable.
"Bonanza" (1960) — Hoss (Dan Blocker) at the Corral Rocks Shack
After the town was demolished — a process that was completed by early 1958 — the only building left standing was the Corral Rocks Shack. Thia appearance by the Shack in "Bonanza," in the episode "Denver McKee," came two years after the Western town had been torn down.
"The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp" (1958): The Corral Rocks Shack, in "The Hole Up"
Some of the best appearances by the Shack took place between 1958 and 1963 — the period following the dismantling of the town. The tiny building had a role in a sequence that played out over multiple episodes of the TV Western "The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp," starting with the episode "The Hole Up."
Morgan Woodward, as Shotgun Gibbs, lives up to his name on "Wyatt Earp"
The Shack was part of the modest spread owned by Shotgun Gibbs, played by Morgan Woodward. The rough-around-the-edges character was introduced in "The Hole Up," which premiered Sept. 16, 1958.
Recalling the first meeting between Earp and Gibbs
Gibbs started off as an adversary of Marshal Earp's, but eventually became Earp's deputy and friend, evolving into a regular on the series. A later episode, "Hail and Farewell," used a flashback to recall the testy first encounter between the two men. A portion of the Corral Rocks Shack can be seen at the left.
Hugh O'Brian as Wyatt Earp near the temporary shed in "Hail and Farewell"
The flashback brought in additional footage to expand on the reminiscence — including shots of the Shack and the temporary shed. It's likely that the new footage was shot at the same time as the original footage, in 1958.
"Wagon Train": "The Stagecoach Story" (Sept. 30, 1959)
Around the same time "Wyatt Earp" kicked off its fifth season with the "Hail and Farewell" episode, another popular TV Western, "Wagon Train," launched its third season with an episode titled "The Stagecoach Story," which also included shots of Sheep Flats and the Corral Rocks Shack.
click here to see an earlier blog post about it.
"The Three Stooges Meet Hercules" (1962) — Iverson Pond
The Three Stooges turned up on Sheep Flats in 1961 for a shoot at Iverson Pond for "The Three Stooges Meet Hercules," released in early 1962. It was one of the few times Sheep Flats hosted actual sheep for a movie shoot.
"The Virginian": "Strangers at Sundown" (1963)
A beautiful sequence featuring Iverson Pond surfaced in 1963 in an episode of "The Virginian" titled "Strangers at Sundown." The sequence marked one of the last times filming was done on Sheep Flats.
Indian Hills Mobile Home Village — on the former site of the Iverson Western street
The same year the "Virginian" episode aired, 1963, Sheep Flats was sold — the first portion of the former Iverson Movie Ranch to be sold off. Later that year, construction began on the Indian Hills Mobile Home Village, which still occupies the space today.
Next up: The big finish to the Western street series.
"The Iverson Movie Ranch Western street, one building at a time" is a series of posts on the movie and TV history of each of the major structures making up Iverson's town set, which stood from 1945 to 1957 and appeared in hundreds of productions.
To see all of the posts in the series on the Iverson Western street, please click on the following links:
Part I: Casa Grande
Part II: The Livery Stable
Part III: The Saloon
Part IV: The Hotel
Part V: The General Store
Part VI: The Barn
Part VII: The Sheriff's Office
Part VIII: The North and South Adobes
Part IX: The Lost Dutchman
Part X: The original north end of town
Part XI: The North and South Towers
Part XII: The Harness Maker
Part XIII: Rainbow Mine Co.
Part XIV: The Church/Schoolhouse
Part XV: The Corral Rocks Shack
Part XVI: The decline and fall of the Western street