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Overland Pacific

Overland Pacific(1954)

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Ross Granger, a Civil War veteran, poses as a telegraph operator in order to investigate acts of sabotage that have been plaguing the building of the Overland Pacific. As he travels by stage to Oaktown, where he is to work as the new telegraph operator, he sees a corpse pierced by Indian arrows swinging from the telegraph wires. Once in Oaktown, Ann Dennison, the daughter of the man responsible for bringing the railroad to the region, identifies the dead man as a railroad worker. Granger is surprised to encounter his old wartime buddy, Del Stewart, who has become the owner of the town's saloon, the Silver Dollar, and is engaged to marry Ann, despite her father's disapproval. Granger also befriends Jessie Lorraine, a dance hall girl, who is also in love with Stewart. The next day, as Dennison and Ann show Granger the territory, the railroad camp is attacked by Comanches, who resent the railroad being built in their territory. Dennison believes that someone besides the Comanches is behind the attacks and his suspicions are confirmed when the men report that the Indians had repeating rifles. Granger telegraphs the central office with the news, and later, Stewart and a rich cattleman, Broden, discuss their plan to sell guns to the Indians, whose attacks will then force the railroad company to reroute the tracks through Oaktown, where they both own land. Later, after Stewart tries to bribe Dennison into changing the railroad path, Dennison accuses him of masterminding the Indian raid. Just then, Broden's henchman, Jason, shoots Dennison dead. Stewart brings Dennison's body back to the railroad camp and announces that Indians shot him, but later, Granger shows Stewart and the dishonest Sheriff Blaney, who is also in on the scheme, the slug from Dennison's body, which he claims came from a white man's gun. Later, Stewart accidentally meets Dark Thunder, the Comanche chief, who is angry that the whites have not moved the railroad out of his territory, and Stewart offers him more guns to continue his raids. Meanwhile, Sheriff Blaney admits his involvement in the gun-running scheme, telling Granger that the guns were smuggled in Stewart's whiskey barrels. As Blaney takes Granger to see where the rifles are hidden, Jason, hidden in the rocks, shoots and hits Granger in the shoulder, and in the ensuing fight, Jason is killed. When Granger gets back to town, Jessie and Ann tend to his wounds, and Granger demands that Stewart show him his whiskey barrels, much to Jessie and Ann's shock. Although Ann and Granger do not discover any rifles in the warehouse, they do find Blaney, who has committed suicide. As Ann, who broke off her engagement to Stewart after her father's death, addresses the railroad workers and tells them that she plans to continue her father's dream for the future, Perkins, the new construction boss, arrives and announces that the railroad will be rerouted through Oaktown. Back at the saloon, Stewart has reunited with an overjoyed Jessie, but when Perkins reveals that he is involved in the sabotage scheme with Stewart, she angrily informs Stewart that she plans to turn him in. Stewart shoots Jessie, but before she dies, she tells the piano player to tell Granger that the new construction boss is a fake. After Stewart goes to see Dark Thunder to tell him that the railroad will be rerouted out of Comanche territory, he, Perkins and Broden are taken hostage while Dark Thunder attacks the railroad camp. Ann, Granger and the men successfully fight off the attack and Granger kills Stewart. Their troubles over, Ann and Granger walk away arm-in-arm.